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See also: illuminati



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Latin illuminatus.


Illuminati pl (plural only)

  1. Any of various societies, sects or other people claiming religious or intellectual enlightenment.
    1. Persons in the early church who had received baptism and been given a lighted taper as a symbol of the spiritual illumination they had received.
    2. Members of a Spanish sect of the sixteenth century, who believed that, by means of prayer, they had attained so perfect a state as to have no need of ordinances, sacraments, good works, etc.; the Alumbrados or Perfectibilists.
    3. Members of certain associations in Europe who combined to promote social reform in pursuit of perfection; especially one originated in 1776 by Adam Weishaupt.
    4. An obscure sect of French familists.
    5. The Hesychasts, Mystics, and Quietists.
    6. The Rosicrucians.
  2. An alleged global, elite, secret society which has as its ultimate objective the subjugation of humanity (world domination or New World Order).
    The methods of control used by "Ming the Merciless, Ruler of the Universe" in the 1980 film Flash Gordon are a metaphor for what some perceive to be the influence of the Illuminati on the real world.

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for Illuminati in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)

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