In religious terms, a prophet is an individual who is claimed to have been contacted by divine or supernatural entities, and to speak for such, serving as an intermediary with humanity, delivering knowledge or information of such entities to others. The message that the prophet conveys is called a prophecy. Traditionally, prophets are regarded as having a role in society that promotes change due to their messages and actions. The English word prophet comes from the Greek προφήτης (profétés) meaning advocate, and has become applied generally to anyone who makes predictions based on nearly any means of analysis or assessment, whether correct or not.
- The prophet's mantle, ere his flight began,
Dropt on the world — a sacred gift to man.
- Thomas Campbell, Pleasures of Hope, Part I, line 43
- I shall always consider the beet guesser the best prophet.
- Cicero, De Divinatione, II. 5, a Greek adage
- A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country and in his own house.
- Jesus, in Matthew, XIII. 57
- If I have eschewed the word prophet, I do not wish to attribute to myself such lofty title at the present time, for whoever is called a prophet now was once called a seer; since a prophet, my son, is properly speaking one who sees distant things through a natural knowledge of all creatures. And it can happen that the prophet bringing about the perfect light of prophecy may make manifest things both human and divine, because this cannot be done otherwise, given that the effects of predicting the future extend far off into time.
- Nostradamus, in The Prophecies (1555), Preface
- I tell you in truth: all men are Prophets or else God does not exist.
- Jean-Paul Sartre, in The Devil and the Good Lord (1951), act 1
- The historian is a reversed prophet.
- Karl Wilhelm Friedrich Schlegel, in Athenäum (1798) I, 2, 20: Fragmente
- Prognostics do not always prove prophecies, at least the wisest prophets make sure of the event first.
- Horace Walpole, letter to Thomas Walpole (9 February 1785)