February 07, 2012
clairvoyance (noun)
\klair-VOY-unss\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
: the power of seeing or knowing about things that are not present to the senses
How do you use it?
My mom always says, "If you want something, you have to actually tell me. I'm not gifted with clairvoyance, you know."
Are you a word wiz?

"Clairvoyance" comes to us from two French words, "clair" and "voyant," that were sandwiched together. What do you think those French words mean?

You've got clear insight if you chose D! "Clairvoyance" was first used in French in the 16th century to mean "keen mental perception" or "good insight into something." While quite common in French, the word was generally not used in English until the 1800s. During that century, interest in the supernatural grew and English borrowed "clairvoyance" from the French to refer to the ability to see or know something that can't be physically seen or known. Mind reading is considered a form of clairvoyance, as you might have perceived from our example sentence.
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