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Related to mesmerism: animal magnetism


see hypnotismhypnotism
[Gr.,=putting to sleep], to induce an altered state of consciousness characterized by deep relaxation and heightened suggestibility. The term was originally coined by James Braid in 1842 to describe a phenomenon previously known as animal magnetism or mesmerism (see
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



an antiscientific medical system promoted by the Austrian physician (of Swiss origin) F. Mesmer (1734–1815) and based on the notion of animal magnetism, widespread at the end of the 18th century in France and Germany. Mesmer believed that the planets affect man through a special magnetic force and that a person in command of this force can emit it to others to favorably influence the course of all diseases. The untenability of the theory was demonstrated in 1774 by a special commission that included A. L. Lavoisier.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


Hypnotism induced by animal magnetism, a supposed force passing from operator to subject.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
But Albert is a fictional wizard to counter the repressive mesmerism that Coleridge attributed to Pitt in Britain.
While mesmerism was primarily used to treat toothaches and headaches suffered by New England women and while spiritualism originated with mysterious noises in a New York farmhouse, parapsychological investigations conducted in both the North and the South explained white spirituality and unconsciousness with references to black servitude.
"Enthusiasts of mesmerism may be sincere, but the cures and convulsions that they produce actually spring from their subjects' fervid imaginations," remarked commission member and American inventor Benjamin Franklin in an interview conducted at a Parisian saloon.
It is plausible that Hopkins read the prolific material published at the turn of the century in medical and psychology journals on "mental healing," mesmerism, neurasthenia, hysteria, and trauma, including the new ideas of Freud and Breuer.
He knew the power of suggestion long before Anton Mesmer came up with his theory of mesmerism.
Long before he published the first edition of Leaves of Grass in 1855, Walt Whitman was invested in mesmerism, which at that time was also known as "animal magnetism," a term coined by its founder Franz Anton Mesmer.
As I wrote before, in the peak of the commotion, the army general who survived a bloody coup masterminded by Major Gideon Orkar, had decided to stop the seeming unending mesmerism of the polity, characterized by continuous shifts of and adjustments in the transition timetable.
Chapter one also discusses other elements that contributed to the vampire myth, including fears of animals that suck blood, as well as the Victorian interest in mesmerism and spiritualism.
Spiritualism, clairvoyance, telepathy, precognition, hypnotism, mesmerism and witchcraft can be taught and practiced but spiritualism can't be attained in varsities.
Mesmerism, or hypnosis, was used, and some medical schools offered instruction for inducing mesmerism.
Sha is on solid ground in arguing that the imagination was of pressing interest to medical writers at the time, given the cures ascribed to mesmerism and the "tractors" promoted by Elisha Perkins.
Craig White, attending to the crossroads of science and Utopian thought in Brook Farm and Blithedale, understands Fourierism as one of many "intellectual fellow-travelers" such as mesmerism and spiritualism (87).