Fortune telling
Fortune For"tune (f[^o]r"t[-u]n; 135), n. [F. fortune, L. fortuna; akin to fors, fortis, chance, prob. fr. ferre to bear, bring. See {Bear} to support, and cf. {Fortuitous}.] 1. The arrival of something in a sudden or unexpected manner; chance; accident; luck; hap; also, the personified or deified power regarded as determining human success, apportioning happiness and unhappiness, and distributing arbitrarily or fortuitously the lots of life. [1913 Webster]

'T is more by fortune, lady, than by merit. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

O Fortune, Fortune, all men call thee fickle. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

2. That which befalls or is to befall one; lot in life, or event in any particular undertaking; fate; destiny; as, to tell one's fortune. [1913 Webster]

You, who men's fortunes in their faces read. --Cowley. [1913 Webster]

3. That which comes as the result of an undertaking or of a course of action; good or ill success; especially, favorable issue; happy event; success; prosperity as reached partly by chance and partly by effort. [1913 Webster]

Our equal crimes shall equal fortune give. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

His father dying, he was driven to seek his fortune. --Swift. [1913 Webster]

4. Wealth; large possessions; large estate; riches; as, a gentleman of fortune.

Syn: Chance; accident; luck; fate. [1913 Webster]

{Fortune book}, a book supposed to reveal future events to those who consult it. --Crashaw.

{Fortune hunter}, one who seeks to acquire wealth by marriage.

{Fortune teller}, one who professes to tell future events in the life of another.

{Fortune telling}, the practice or art of professing to reveal future events in the life of another. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Fortune-telling — is the practice of predicting the future, usually of an individual, through mystical or supernatural means and often for commercial gain. It often conflates with the religious practice known as divination.European and Euro American fortune… …   Wikipedia

  • fortune-telling — fortune teller ► NOUN ▪ a person who tells people s fortunes. DERIVATIVES fortune telling noun …   English terms dictionary

  • Fortune-Telling —    Although comparatively few Gypsy women practice fortune telling, it provides a useful first or second income for those families who pursue this profession. Many Kalderash families specialize in fortune telling, with the daughters learning from …   Historical dictionary of the Gypsies

  • fortune-telling — I. ˈ ̷ ̷ ̷ ̷ˌ ̷ ̷ ̷ ̷ noun Etymology: fortune (I) + telling, gerund of tell : the art or practice of telling fortunes II. adjective Etymology: fortune ( …   Useful english dictionary

  • fortune-telling — ➡ gypsies * * *       the forecasting of future events or the delineation of character by methods not ordinarily considered to have a rational basis. Evidence indicates that forms of fortune telling were practiced in ancient China, Egypt, Chaldea …   Universalium

  • fortune-telling —    The urge to know one s future takes many forms. Children count cherry stones or daisy petals, adults observe *omens and interpret *dreams; formerly, young women performed *love divinations on set nights such as *Halloween or *St Agnes Eve to… …   A Dictionary of English folklore

  • fortune-telling — noun or adjective see fortune teller …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • fortune telling — 1. noun The act of predicting a persons future. 2. verb Predicting a persons future …   Wiktionary

  • fortune-telling — noun The prediction of future events, especially those of a personal nature …   Wiktionary

  • fortune telling — for·tune tell·ing || ‚fÉ”rtʃn‚telɪŋ /‚fɔːt foretelling the future, predicting the future …   English contemporary dictionary

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