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a. a message of divine truth revealing God's will
b. the act of uttering such a message
2. the function, activity, or charismatic endowment of a prophet or prophets

Prophecy; Prophesy

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

A prophecy is a divinely inspired utterance that foretells events in the future events. The verb differentiation, to prophesy, did not emerge until c.1700. Today, to prophesy is to speak by divine inspiration, or in the name of a deity.

A prophet is regarded as the mouthpiece of deity. He or she does not question deity but, rather, prepares for divine inspiration, making himor herself receptive by prayer and/or fasting.


See also Omen.
Prosperity (See SUCCESS.)
prophecy that he would not live to taste the wine from his vineyards is fulfilled. [Gk. Myth.: Brewer Dictionary, 32]
Roman officials who interpreted omens. [Rom. Hist.: Parrinder, 34]
vaticinally speaks with Jehovah’s voice. [O.T.: Numbers 23:8–10; 24:18–24]
Irish spirit who foretells death. [Irish Folklore: Briggs, 14–16]
Belshazzar’s Feast
disembodied hand foretells Belshazzar’s death. [O.T.: Daniel 5]
Brave New World
picture of world’s condition 600 years from now. [Br. Lit.: Brave New World]
Calamity Jane
(Martha Jane Canary or Martha Burke, 1852–1903) mannish prophetess of doom. [Am. Hist.: Flexner, 71]
declares that Iphigenia must be sacrificed to appease Artemis and ensure the Greeks’ safe passage to Troy. [Gk. Myth.: Hamilton, 261]
sees bloody statue of Julius in dream. [Br. Lit.: Julius Caesar]
the cards repeatedly spell her death. [Fr. Opera: Bizet, Carmen, Westerman, 189–190]
always accurate but fated to be disbelieved, predicts doom of Troy to brother, Hector. [Br. Lit.: Troilus and Cressida; Gk. Myth.: Parrinder, 57]
sibyl to discover future, leads Aeneas to Hades. [Gk. Lit.: Aeneid]
ancient oracular center near Mt. Parnassus. [Gk. Myth.: Parrinder, 74; Jobes, 428]
oldest oracle of Zeus in Greece. [Gk. Myth.: Kravitz, 83]
priest and prophet to the Jews during Babylonian captivity. [O.T.: Ezekiel]
Golden Cockerel
its crowing predicts either peace or disaster. [Russ. Opera: Rimsky-Korsakov, Coq d’Or, Westerman, 392]
Guardian Black Dog
sinister omen of death. [Br. Folklore: Briggs, 207–208]
ancient Etruscan seers who divined the future from the entrails of animals. [Rom. Hist.: EB, IV: 933]
tells of impending disaster for the idolatrous. [O.T.: II Kings 22:14–19]
I Ching
a book of divination and speculations. [Chinese Lit.: I Ching]
foretells fall of Jerusalem; prophet of doom. [O.T.: Isaiah]
the Lord’s herald. [O.T.: Jeremiah]
the Baptist foretells the coming of Jesus. [N.T.: Luke 3:16]
predicted famine from Pharaoh’s dreams. [O.T.: Genesis 41:25–36]
seer who interpreted the words of the Argo’s talking prow. [Gk. Myth.: Benét, 684]
(570–632) the prophet of Islam. [Islam. Hist.: NCE, 1854]
(1503–1566) startlingly accurate French astrologer and physician. [Fr. Hist.: NCE, 1969]
priestess of Apollo, the Delphic Oracle, endowed with prophetic powers. [Gk. Hist.: Collier’s, VII, 682]
Rocking-Horse Winner, The
a small boy predicts winners in horse races through the medium of a demonic rocking horse. [Br. Lit.: D. H. Lawrence The Rocking-Horse Winner in Benét, 866]
women endowed with prophetic powers who interceded with gods for men. [Gk. Myth.: Zimmerman, 239]
Sibylline Books
nine tomes foretelling Rome’s future. [Rom. Leg.: Brewer Dictionary]
Smith, Joseph Mormon
prophet; professed visions of new faith. [Am. Hist.: Jameson, 467]
Smith, Valentine Michael
messianic Martian shows earthlings the way. [Am. Lit.: Stranger in a Strange Land]
(Homericae, Virgilianae, Biblicae) fortune-telling by taking random passages from a book (as Iliad, Aeneid, or the Bible). [Eur. Culture: Collier’s, VII, 683]
Sosostris, Madame
“the wisest woman in Europe,” cleverly interprets the Tarot cards. [Br. Poetry: T. S. Eliot “The Waste Land”]
cards used to tell fortunes. [Magic: Brewer Dictionary, 1063]
blind and greatest of all mythological prophets. [Gk. Myth.: Zimmerman, 255; Gk. Lit.: Antigone; Odyssey; Oedipus Tyrannus]
foretells Gustavus’ murder by his friend Anckarstrom. [Ital. Opera: Verdi, Masked Ball, Westerman, 313–315]
voice … crying in the wilderness
John the Baptist, in reference to his prophecy of the coming of Christ. [N.T.: Matthew 3:3]
Weird Sisters
three witches who set Macbeth agog with prophecies of kingship. [Br. Lit.: Macbeth]
References in periodicals archive ?
Shocked by the worship of Moloch he observed in the disreputable Valley of Ben-hinnom, Jeremiah goes to the court of the House of the Lord and prophesies disaster upon Jerusalem.
Staking his life, Jeremiah stands in the court of the Temple and prophesies that if the people won't obey the Lord, abiding by His teachings, then I will make this House like Shiloh and I will make this city a curse for all the nations of the earth (26:6).
He realises that some people have witnessed an eight-foot moth while others have had prophesies coming out of the bath plug-hole.
The October eclogue of The Shepheardes Calender becomes a privileged text for Cheney, since it is here that Spenser prophesies and inaugurates his four-genre career.
Get ready for BLACKstreet, which Vibe already prophesies as "bound to be a funk classic.
By Gatkuoth Deng August 29,2009 -- I have been encouraged by a lot of email messages flooding my email account requesting that I should avail more of the Ngundeng's prophesies about Sudan.
Web talk of an impending race war bleeds effortlessly into Christian prophesies of a final battle between good and evil.
Ngundeng Bong, who was born in late 1830's and died peacefully in 1906, was believed to have connections with divinity among the Nuer and some other tribes in South Sudan because of his foretold prophesies which they believed to be divine and being fulfilled.
We still believe that it's the reasonable way to understand these prophesies, arising from the text itself and not political correctness,'' he said.