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1. People claiming to be unusually enlightened with regard to a subject.
2. Illuminati Any of various groups claiming special religious or philosophical enlightenment.

[Latin illūminātī, from pl. of illūminātus, past participle of illūmināre, to light up; see illuminate.]


pl n, sing -to (-təʊ)
(Philosophy) a group of persons claiming exceptional enlightenment on some subject, esp religion
[C16: from Latin, literally: the enlightened ones, from illūmināre to illuminate]


pl n, sing -to (-təʊ)
1. (Philosophy) any of several groups of illuminati, esp in 18th-century France
2. (Roman Catholic Church) a group of religious enthusiasts of 16th-century Spain who were persecuted by the Inquisition
3. (Christian Churches, other) a masonic sect founded in Bavaria in 1778 claiming that the illuminating grace of Christ resided in it alone
4. (Christian Churches, other) a rare name for the Rosicrucians


(ɪˌlu məˈnɑ ti, -ˈneɪ taɪ), sing. -to (-toʊ)
1. persons claiming to possess superior enlightenment.
2. (cap.) any of various religious sects claiming special enlightenment.
[1590–1600; < Latin illūminātī, pl. of illūminātus enlightened; see illuminate]
References in periodicals archive ?
The first modern prophet of that revolutionary "faith," Billington documents, was Adam Weishaupt, founder of the Bavarian Illuminati.
Once part of Satan's grand conspiracy, always part of it: the Bavarian Illuminati and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion will never die.
De Barruel was a French ex-Jesuit and abbot who wrote the four-volume Memoirs Illustrating the History of Jacobinism, a best-selling masterwork of fear-mongering that blamed secret societies, Freemasons, and the Bavarian Illuminati for conspiring to overthrow Christianity and private property.