fata morganafa·ta mor·ga·na
a mirage, esp. one sometimes seen off the coast of Sicily near the Strait of Messina
Origin of fata morganaIt, literally , Morgan le Fay: such mirages were formerly believed to be caused by her
Origin of fata morganaItalian, mirage, Morgan le Fay (from the belief that the mirage was caused by her witchcraft) : fata, fairy (from Vulgar Latin *fata, goddess of fate; see fairy) + Morgana, Morgan le Fay; akin to Medieval Latin Morgen (ultimately of Celtic origin ; perhaps akin to Old Irish Morrígan, a powerful, often sinister female supernatural being of Irish myth).