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n. pl. ar·ca·na (-nə) or ar·ca·nums
1. A deep secret; a mystery.
2. often arcana Specialized knowledge or details unknown to or misunderstood by the average person: "a private-equity investor whose specialty was the arcana of the banking industry" (Andrew Ross Sorkin).
3. A secret essence or remedy; an elixir.

[Latin arcānum, from neuter of arcānus, secret; see arcane.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


n, pl -na (-nə)
1. (sometimes plural) a profound secret or mystery known only to initiates
2. (Alchemy) a secret of nature sought by alchemists
[C16: from Latin; see arcane]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ɑrˈkeɪ nəm)

n., pl. -na (-nə).
1. a secret accessible only to the few; mystery.
2. a powerful remedy; elixir.
[1590–1600; < Latin, neuter (used as n.) of arcānus arcane]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


a secret or mystery; carefully hidden knowledge. See also alchemy. — arcana, n. pi.
See also: Knowledge
the secret of life; a great elixir or remedy sought by the alchemists. See also knowledge.
See also: Alchemy
-Ologies & -Isms. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.arcanum - information known only to a special group; "the secret of Cajun cooking"
info, information - a message received and understood
esoterica - secrets known only to an initiated minority
cabala, cabbala, cabbalah, kabala, kabbala, kabbalah, qabala, qabalah - an esoteric or occult matter resembling the Kabbalah that is traditionally secret
countersign, password, watchword, parole, word - a secret word or phrase known only to a restricted group; "he forgot the password"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
The four league teams would be the YMCA, the 28th Separate Co., the Arcanums (the Arcanum Club was a "social and sporting" club in Utica), and the 31st Separate Co.
The YMCA beat the 28th, 8-6, and the Arcanums beat the 31st, 22-17, before a paid crowd of 231.