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Rapt vs. wrapt

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  • Rapt is an adjective meaning deeply engrossed or deeply moved. Wrapt is an archaic past participle of wrap. It was fairly common as recently as the middle 19th century, but it gradually fell out of use through the second half of that century and into the 20th. Today we use wrapped as the past tense and past participle of wrap, so we have no use for wrapt.

    Examples

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    It was standing room only in the vast space of Kelvingrove and an audience held rapt by a performance of masterly control. [Herald Scotland]

    As a child, I’d sit in rapt attention when my Danish mother read Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tales. [NPR]

    In the South Parish Community Centre in Cork city centre, the audience is rapt. [Irish Times]

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