from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Owning or mastering something. Used with of: one who is possessed of great wealth.
  • adj. Controlled by or as if by a spirit or other force; obsessed: a teenager by love possessed.
  • adj. Calm; collected: one who remained possessed in times of great trial.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. Simple past tense and past participle of possess.
  • adj. controlled by evil spirits.
  • adj. Seized by powerful emotions.
  • adj. Having; owning.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Controlled by some evil spirit or influence; demented; mad.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. influenced or controlled by a powerful force such as a strong emotion
  • adj. frenzied as if possessed by a demon


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • We don't like to use the word possessed because that means they don't have any power of their own.

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  • One of the requisite job skills for a head waiter in a high class Austrian restaurant is being intimately familiar with the title possessed by every regular customer, and most occasional customers, of said restaurant.

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  • "Parents have used the word 'possessed,' " says Susan Swedo , chief of pediatrics and developmental neuroscience at the National Institute of Mental Health who first made the connection to strep in the mid-1990s.

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  • The former work of the same title possessed the same kind of merit.

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  • Sat 10/31/09 11: 42 AM theatre version - katie disappears downstairs, screams for micah, who runs down … there is an obvious struggle .. then silence .. then sounds of heavy footsteps coming back upstairs. micah is thrown into the room very suddenly, then katie walks in possessed, all jerky walking, and then lunges at the camera – goes black.

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  • A young Winston Churchill wrote his first book, The Story of the Malakand Field Force, about his experiences fighting those tribes, whom he described as possessed of a “wild and merciless fanaticism.”

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  • Clearly, both the Spanish and Mesoamerican populations of New Spain possessed cultures that encouraged them to fear the consequences of their personal (and collective) behavior.

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  • To say that all those people who didn't choose you but voted for Obama are naive and demon possessed is arrogant and prideful.

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  • How I understand by osmosis that particular obsession and how possessed is Father Declan by it all.

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  • "Active" farm machinery, while possessed, is still a distant second in horror, mayhem, and finality to the Lucifer Incarnate of farm machinery, which would be "abandoned farm machinery."

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