Definition of sorcerer in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈsôrs(ə)rər/


A person who claims or is believed to have magic powers; a wizard.
Example sentences
  • Zombies are dead bodies with no souls, created by the black magic of voodoo sorcerers.
  • But how could he have, for he knew it was forbidden for a white wizard to make contact with a black sorcerer or sorcerers.
  • But Wagner's music casts a spell infinitely more seductive than those wielded by his motley collection of wizards and sorcerers.


Late Middle English: from sorser (from Old French sorcier, based on Latin sors, sort- 'lot') + -er1.

  • A sorcerer was originally a sorser. The word comes via Old French sorcier from Latin sors ‘lot, fortune’, the root of sort (Late Middle English). The Latin relates to the use of oracles and the casting of lots to foretell the future. A sorcerer's apprentice is a person who starts a process but is then unable to control it without help. This is the translation of the French L'apprenti sorcier, the title of an 1897 symphonic poem by Paul Dukas based on Der Zauberlehrling, a ballad written in 1797 by the German poet and dramatist Goethe. In this ballad the apprentice's use of magic spells when his master is absent sets in motion a series of events which he cannot control.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: sor·cer·er

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.