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1. In folklore, the magical ability to assume the form and characteristics of a wolf.
2. A delusion that one has become or assumed the characteristics of a wolf or other animal.


1. (European Myth & Legend) the supposed magical transformation of a person into a wolf
2. (Psychiatry) psychiatry a delusion in which a person believes that he is a wolf
[C16: from Greek lukānthropía, from lukos wolf + anthrōpos man]
lycanthropic adj


(laɪˈkæn θrə pi)

1. a delusion in which one imagines oneself to be a wolf or other wild animal.
2. the supposed or fabled assumption by a human being of the appearance of a wolf.
[1575–85; < Greek]
ly•can•throp•ic (ˌlaɪ kənˈθrɒp ɪk) adj.


1. Psychiatry. Also called lycomania. a kind of insanity in which the patient believes himself to be a beast, especially a wolf.
2. the supposed or fabled assumption of the form of a wolf by a human being. — lycanthropic, adj.
See also: Wolves
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.lycanthropy - (folklore) the magical ability of a person to assume the characteristics of a wolflycanthropy - (folklore) the magical ability of a person to assume the characteristics of a wolf
magical ability, magical power - an ability to perform magic
folklore - the unwritten lore (stories and proverbs and riddles and songs) of a culture
References in periodicals archive ?
There is historical evidence from numerous cultures that lycanthropy as a spiritual practice or psychological condition has existed under a variety of circumstances.
The spell will also awaken the power of lycanthropy in the ancestors of her champions, allowing her to cheat death and return to once again wage war on civilization.
Read Evans and Bartholomew on lycanthropy and laughing epidemics.
The question of what must be done to remain human is posed in its negative form, by showing the loss of humanity (via lycanthropy, vampirism, decay, disease, violence) because the fear of this loss motivates the genre" (3).
In terms of plot the series revolves around McCall and a close coterie of friends who must struggle with an increasingly diverse array of supernatural phenomena subsequent to Scott's being bitten and infected with lycanthropy.
Specifically, Hughes argues that Lycanthropy is HIV can become a new, lasting archetypal metaphor for the modern world.
lycanthropy (one delusionally misidentifies one's self as an animal--eg, a wolf, rabbit, or snake, and behaves accordingly)
Besides that, associations of CS with other syndromes are described, such as catatonic syndrome [18], malignant neuroleptic syndrome [19], lycanthropy [20], hydrophobia [21], and capgras syndrome [22, 23].
The practices of totemism, (3) lycanthropy, and shamanism, among others, reflect this understanding.
Indeed, the original serial presents the werewolf curses of Chris Jennings and Quentin, whereas Burton introduces us to the character of Carolyn (Chloe Grace Moretz), Elisabeth's rebellious daughter, the troubled adolescent, whose aggressiveness is thus explained through the association (frequently evidenced by both critics and film directors) between lycanthropy, menstruations and the lunar cycles governing both.
The recipes and relationships of The Changeling exhibit "the cosmological undercurrents of antipathies and sympathies" (26), and the experimentation and lycanthropy present in The Duchess of Malfi enters into the world of demonology.
Hirsch, "An Italian Werewolf in London: Lycanthropy and The Duchess of Malfi" Early Modern Literary Studies 11.