The occult (from the
The term occult sciences was used in the 16th century to refer to
Particularly since the late twentieth century, various authors have used the occult as a substantivized adjective. In this usage, "the occult" is a category into which varied beliefs and practices are placed if they are considered to fit into neither
The idea of "occult sciences" developed in the sixteenth century. The term usually encompassed three practices—
During the Enlightenment, the term "occult" increasingly came to be seen as intrinsically incompatible with the concept of "science". From that point on, use of the term "occult science(s)" implied a conscious polemic against mainstream science.
Occult qualities are properties that have no known rational explanation; in the