|Smiling Spider (1891) by Odilon Redon|
Adjective. Originally Scottish. Early 16th century.
[Origin uncertain: perhaps connected with ELF noun.]
Weird, ghostly, unnatural; hideous.
The adjective eldritch calls to mind a number of otherworldy artists - H. P. Lovecraft, for one, whose genuinely unsettling tales of weirdness are often associated with the word. Another is the French artist Odilon Redon, who said that his drawings place us in "the ambiguous world of the undetermined." Even if you're not an arachnophobe, you will perhaps agree that Redon's Smiling Spider is an example of unsettling, eldritch art.
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