- a person who dedicates his or her life to a pursuit of contemplative ideals and practices extreme self-denial or self-mortification for religious reasons.
- a person who leads an austerely simple life, especially one who abstains from the normal pleasures of life or denies himself or herself material satisfaction.
- (in the early Christian church) a monk; hermit.
- relating to asceticism, the doctrine that one can reach a high spiritual state through the practice of extreme self-denial or self-mortification.
- rigorously abstinent; austere: an ascetic existence.
- exceedingly strict or severe in religious exercises or self-mortification.
Origin of ascetic
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for ascetically
"I do not use tobacco nor alcohol in any form," repeated Hotchkiss ascetically.Openings in the Old Trail
His mouth was ascetically thin-lipped, but firm and clean cut.The Vintage
Edward Frederic Benson
And so those who are ascetically disposed, if not in their life, in their tastes, condemn Renoir as pretty and sentimental.
Irish monasticism was an ascetically ordered continuance of Irish society.The Mediaeval Mind (Volume I of II)
Henry Osborn Taylor
Ascetically benevolent were his grey eyes; a pale and ghostly smile played on the curves of his thin lips.The Island Pharisees
- a person who practises great self-denial and austerities and abstains from worldly comforts and pleasures, esp for religious reasons
- (in the early Christian Church) a monk
- rigidly abstinent or abstemious; austere
- of or relating to ascetics or asceticism
- intensely rigorous in religious austerities
Word Origin and History for ascetically
1640s, from Greek asketikos "rigorously self-disciplined, laborious," from asketes "monk, hermit," earlier "one who practices an art or trade," from askein "to exercise, train," originally "to train for athletic competition, practice gymnastics, exercise."
"one of the early Christians who retired to the desert to live solitary lives of meditation and prayer," 1670s, from ascetic (adj.).