What does ghostly mean?

Definitions for ghostly
ˈgoʊst lighost·ly

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word ghostly.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. apparitional, ghostlike, ghostly, phantasmal, spectral, spiritualadjective

    resembling or characteristic of a phantom

    "a ghostly face at the window"; "a phantasmal presence in the room"; "spectral emanations"; "spiritual tappings at a seance"


  1. ghostlyadjective

    Of or pertaining to ghosts or spirituality.

  2. ghostlyadjective

    Spooky; frightening.

  3. Etymology: From gostly, gastlich, from gastlic, equivalent to. Cognate with gostly, gastly, gaistlie, geastlik, geestelijk, geistlich, geistlig.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Ghostlyadjective

    Etymology: from ghost.

    Our common necessities, and the lack which we all have, as well of ghostly as of earthly favours, is in each kind so easily known, but the gifts of God, according to these degrees and times, which he in his secret wisdom seeth meet, are so diversly bestowed, that it seldom appeareth what all receive, what all stand in need of, it seldom lieth hid. Richard Hooker, b. v.

    The graces of the spirit are much more precious than worldly benefits, and our ghostly evils of greater importance than any harm which the body feeleth. Richard Hooker, b. v. s 35.

    To deny me the ghostly comfort of my chaplains, seems a greater barbarity than is ever used by Christians. Charles I .

    Hence will I to my ghostly friar’s close cell,
    His help to crave, and my dear hap to tell. William Shakespeare, Ro. and Jul.

    The ghostly father now hath done his shrift. William Shakespeare, H. VI.


  1. ghostly

    A ghost is the soul or spirit of a dead person or animal that is believed to be able to appear to the living. In ghostlore, descriptions of ghosts vary widely, from an invisible presence to translucent or barely visible wispy shapes to realistic, lifelike forms. The deliberate attempt to contact the spirit of a deceased person is known as necromancy, or in spiritism as a séance. Other terms associated with it are apparition, haunt, phantom, poltergeist, shade, specter, spirit, spook, wraith, demon, and ghoul. The belief in the existence of an afterlife, as well as manifestations of the spirits of the dead, is widespread, dating back to animism or ancestor worship in pre-literate cultures. Certain religious practices—funeral rites, exorcisms, and some practices of spiritualism and ritual magic—are specifically designed to rest the spirits of the dead. Ghosts are generally described as solitary, human-like essences, though stories of ghostly armies and the ghosts of animals rather than humans have also been recounted. They are believed to haunt particular locations, objects, or people they were associated with in life. According to a 2009 study by the Pew Research Center, 18% of Americans say they have seen a ghost.The overwhelming consensus of science is that there is no proof that ghosts exist. Their existence is impossible to falsify, and ghost hunting has been classified as pseudoscience. Despite centuries of investigation, there is no scientific evidence that any location is inhabited by the spirits of the dead. Historically, certain toxic and psychoactive plants (such as datura and hyoscyamus niger), whose use has long been associated with necromancy and the underworld, have been shown to contain anticholinergic compounds that are pharmacologically linked to dementia (specifically DLB) as well as histological patterns of neurodegeneration. Recent research has indicated that ghost sightings may be related to degenerative brain diseases such as Alzheimer's disease. Common prescription medication and over-the-counter drugs (such as sleep aids) may also, in rare instances, cause ghost-like hallucinations, particularly zolpidem and diphenhydramine. Older reports linked carbon monoxide poisoning to ghost-like hallucinations.In folklore studies, ghosts fall within the motif index designation E200–E599 ("Ghosts and other revenants").


  1. ghostly

    Ghostly refers to anything related to, similar, or characteristic of a ghost, particularly in terms of being eerie, spectral, or haunting. It can pertain to something that is inexplicably strange, elusive, frightening, pale, or simply suggestive of the supernatural.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Ghostlyadjective

    relating to the soul; not carnal or secular; spiritual; as, a ghostly confessor

  2. Ghostlyadjective

    of or pertaining to apparitions

  3. Ghostlyadverb

    spiritually; mystically

  4. Etymology: [OE. gastlich, gostlich, AS. gstlic. See Ghost.]

How to pronounce ghostly?

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  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of ghostly in Chaldean Numerology is: 8

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of ghostly in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of ghostly in a Sentence

  1. Caroline Edwards:

    He was ghostly pale, which I figured at that point that he had been sprayed, and I was concerned, my cop alarm bells went off because if you get sprayed with pepper spray, you're going to turn red. He turned just about as pale as this sheet of paper.

  2. Philip Goode:

    You look at a quarter moon. You can see the whole moon because three quarters of it is illuminated in this ghostly light.

  3. Albert Einstein:

    Most people go on living their everyday life half frightened, half indifferent, they behold the ghostly tragi-comedy that is being performed on the international stage before the eyes and ears of the world.

  4. Sam Hodder:

    This is a property where you can almost tangibly feel that it is healing, that it is recovering, you walk through the forest and, even as you see the kind of ghostly stumps of ancient trees that were harvested, you could also in the foggy landscape see the monsters that were left behind as well as the young redwoods that are sprouting from those stumps.

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"ghostly." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 2 Oct. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/ghostly>.

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    a consonant produced by stopping the flow of air at some point and suddenly releasing it
    • A. ectomorphic
    • B. unsealed
    • C. occlusive
    • D. eminent

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