"act of plundering or theft," especially "act of carrying off (a woman) by force, especially for the purpose of rape," early 14c., verbal noun from ravish (v.).
mid-14c., "ravenous;" late 14c., "enchanting, exciting rapture or ecstasy;" present-participle adjective from ravish (v.). The figurative notion is of "carrying off from earth to heaven." Related: Ravishingly.
updated on May 03, 2021