Entries linking to enrapt
Also used with native and imported elements to form verbs from nouns and adjectives, with a sense "put in or on" (encircle), also "cause to be, make into" (endear), and used as an intensive (enclose). Spelling variants in French that were brought over into Middle English account for parallels such as ensure/insure, and most en- words in English had at one time or another a variant in in-, and vice versa.
late 14c., "carried away in an ecstatic trance," from Latin raptus, past participle of rapere "seize, carry off" (see rape (v.)). A figurative sense, the notion is of being "carried up into Heaven" (bodily or in a dream), as in a saint's vision.
The Latin literal sense of "carried away" also was in English from 1550s. Essentially an alternative past participle of rape, in 15c.-17c. the word also sometimes could mean "raped." The sense of "engrossed" is recorded from c. 1500.
As a Latin past-participle adjective, in English it spawned unthinking the back-formed verb rap "to affect with rapture," which was common c. 1600-1750. Before that, there was a verb rapt "seize or grasp, seize and carry off; ravish" (1570s), also "enrapture, transport as with ecstasy" (1590s). There also was a noun rapt in 15c. meaning both "rapture" and "rape."
updated on September 01, 2014