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[mawr-uh-lahyz, mor-] /ˈmɔr əˌlaɪz, ˈmɒr-/
verb (used without object), moralized, moralizing.
to reflect on or express opinions about something in terms of right and wrong, especially in a self-righteous or tiresome way.
verb (used with object), moralized, moralizing.
to explain in a moral sense, or draw a moral from.
to improve the morals of.
Also, especially British, moralise.
Origin of moralize
1350-1400; Middle English moralisen < Medieval Latin mōrālizāre. See moral, -ize
Related forms
moralization, noun
moralizer, noun
moralizingly, adverb
overmoralize, verb, overmoralized, overmoralizing.
overmoralizingly, adverb
unmoralizing, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for moralizing
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • This piece of moralizing is evidently occasioned by some tricks in trade indulged in by Jewish merchants.

  • Here we might moralize if we had the room, but moralizing is out of the question.

  • Carl, however, was not listening to Mrs. Harling's moralizing.

    Carl and the Cotton Gin Sara Ware Bassett
  • I thought you would be moralizing on the way to bring him up to use it.'

    Heartsease Charlotte M. Yonge
  • She is too ready to moralize, and her moralizing degenerates unfortunately often into commonplace platitudes.

    Mary Wollstonecraft Elizabeth Robins Pennell
  • She had recovered a good deal while he was moralizing, and became interested.

    Hopes and Fears Charlotte M. Yonge
British Dictionary definitions for moralizing


(intransitive) to make moral pronouncements
(transitive) to interpret or explain in a moral sense
(transitive) to improve the morals of
Derived Forms
moralization, moralisation, noun
moralizer, moraliser, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for moralizing



c.1400, "expound or interpret spiritual or moral significance," from Old French moraliser and directly from Late Latin moralizare, from moralis (see moral (adj.)). Related: Moralized; moralizing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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