Definition of oracular in English:

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Pronunciation: /ɒˈrakjʊlə/


1Relating to an oracle: the oracular shrine
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  • Later, the oracular prophecies completed their awful and ironic cycle of fulfillment when Oedipus undertook a mission to save Thebes, still acknowledged as his native city, from the predations of a dire female monster, the Sphinx.
  • Overall, the pursuit of ‘proving’ the validity of divination and oracular knowledge is about as valid as attempting to prove love, the color blue to the color-blind or ecstatic trance to the uninitiated.
  • Laius set off to ask the oracular Pythoness at Delphi how to deal with this monster.
1.1(Of an utterance, advice, etc.) hard to interpret; enigmatic: an ambiguous, oracular remark
More example sentences
  • The diviner employs the arts dramatically, heightening all the senses, to create and highlight this radically different setting for the oracular utterance.
  • Speaking as a vague, confused and oracular writer who regularly indulges in verbal obscurity caused by my obvious mental confusion, I would humbly suggest that he is talking complete and utter rubbish.
  • Instead of unambiguous statements, the Union contents itself with oracular analyses.
1.2Holding or claiming the authority of an oracle: he holds forth in oracular fashion
More example sentences
  • Crucially, however, even within the confines of the biological sciences, the science of genetics does not, and cannot, speak with a single, oracular voice.
  • Another aspect of the wise-woman's status is that she is regarded as an oracular authority for her community regarding the meaning and significance of experiences they fail to understand - accidents, misfortunes, mysterious illness.
  • Their work had an oracular or prophetic immediacy for a civilian population generally starved of real news about the war.



Pronunciation: /ɒrakjʊˈlarɪti/
Example sentences
  • The aspect of oracularity Wood seems most interested in developing, however, is not obscurity so much as uncertainty, enacted, it seems, as a fudging of the distinction between fact and fiction.


Pronunciation: /ɒˈrakjʊləli/
Example sentences
  • ‘He already feels like a rumour,’ he oracularly concludes.
  • Isn't she telling the reader that she saw herself as a pawn, well before he supposedly pushed his face too close to hers, issued an oracularly loopy come-on, and put his hand on her thigh?
  • In 1959, in a letter to a friend, Marshall McLuhan oracularly announced the annulment of the organizing temporality created by the book and the tradition of reading it sustained.


Mid 17th century: from Latin oraculum (see oracle) + -ar1.

Words that rhyme with oracular

Dracula, facula, spectacular, vernacular
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