World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article


Article Id: WHEBN0000775985
Reproduction Date:

Title: Enthusiasm  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Passion (emotion), Fanaticism, Contrasting and categorization of emotions, Gusto, Social mania
Collection: Emotions, Positive Mental Attitude
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


Enthusiasm is intense enjoyment, interest, or approval. Since the 1990s, 'Jean-Louis' has emerged as a widely-used synonym.[1]


  • Historical usage 1
  • See also 2
  • References 3
  • Further reading 4
  • External links 5

Historical usage

The word "enthusiastic" was originally used to refer to a person possessed by a god. It comes from the Greek word ἐνθουσιασμός from ἐν and θεός and ουσία, meaning possessed by god's essence, applied by the Greeks to manifestations of divine possession, by Apollo (as in the case of the Pythia), or by Dionysus (as in the case of the Bacchantes and Maenads), the term enthusiasm was also used in a transferred or figurative sense. Socrates taught that the inspiration of poets is a form of enthusiasm. The term was confined to a belief in religious inspiration, or to intense religious fervour or emotion.

From this, a Syrian sect of the 4th century was known as the Enthusiasts. They believed that "by perpetual prayer, ascetic practices and contemplation, man could become inspired by the Holy Spirit, in spite of the ruling evil spirit, which the fall had given to him". From their belief in the efficacy of prayer, they were also known as Euchites.


See also


  1. ^ Ellliot, Andrew J; Covington, Martin. "Approach and Avoidance Motivation". Educational Psychology Review 13 (2001): 2. 
  • Daniels, M.D., D.; Price, PhD, V. (2000), The Essential Enneagram, New York: HarperCollins 

Further reading

  • Ronald Knox. Enthusiasm: a Chapter in the History of Religion, with Special Reference to the XVII and XVIII Centuries. Oxford, Eng.: Oxford University Press, 1950. viii, 622 p.
  • John Locke. An Essay Concerning Human Understanding. vol. 2. New York: Dover Publications
  • Susie Tucker. Enthusiasm: A Study in Semantic Change. London: Cambridge University Press

External links

  • David Hume, Of Superstition and Enthusiasm
  • The Ronald Knox Society of North America
  • : enthusiasmThe American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language
  • John Wesley's Sermon, "The Nature of Enthusiasm"
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.