As it is Halloween, I think this is just the perfect word for the occasion.
This is truly a “phantastic” word. 😉 It’s an adjective that means characterized by or pertaining to rapid changes in light intensity and color or characterized by or pertaining to a dream-like blurring of real and imaginary elements. I think Salvador Dalí embraced this concept quite masterfully in his paintings.
Derived from the noun phantasmagoria – a form of theatre that used a special lantern to project scary images such as skeletons, demons, and ghosts on walls – this word probably hasn’t seen the light of day since the 19th century. Nevertheless, it is still quite interesting to see what counted as entertainment nearly two centuries ago. 🙂
Want to read more about other uncommon words? 🙂 See the Interesting Words page.