noun, plural tal·is·mans.

  1. a stone, ring, or other object, engraved with figures or characters supposed to possess occult powers and worn as an amulet or charm.
  2. any amulet or charm.
  3. anything whose presence exercises a remarkable or powerful influence on human feelings or actions.

noun plural -mans

  1. a stone or other small object, usually inscribed or carved, believed to protect the wearer from evil influences
  2. anything thought to have magical or protective powers

n.1630s, from French talisman, in part via Arabic tilsam (plural tilsaman), a Greek loan-word; in part directly from Byzantine Greek telesma “talisman, religious rite, payment,” earlier “consecration, ceremony,” originally “completion,” from telein “perform (religious rites), pay (tax), fulfill,” from telos “completion, end, tax” (see tele-).

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