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profane

[pruh-feyn, proh-] /prəˈfeɪn, proʊ-/
adjective
1.
characterized by irreverence or contempt for God or sacred principles or things; irreligious.
2.
not devoted to holy or religious purposes; unconsecrated; secular (opposed to sacred).
3.
unholy; heathen; pagan:
profane rites.
4.
not initiated into religious rites or mysteries, as persons.
5.
common or vulgar.
verb (used with object), profaned, profaning.
6.
to misuse (anything that should be held in reverence or respect); defile; debase; employ basely or unworthily.
7.
to treat (anything sacred) with irreverence or contempt; violate the sanctity of:
to profane a shrine.
Origin of profane
1350-1400
1350-1400; (adj.) < Latin profānus literally, before (outside of) the temple; replacing Middle English prophane < Medieval Latin prophānus desecrated (see pro-1, fane); (v.) < Latin profānāre, derivative of profānus; replacing Middle English prophanen < Medieval Latin prophānāre to desecrate
Related forms
profanely, adverb
profaneness, noun
profaner, noun
half-profane, adjective
nonprofane, adjective
nonprofanely, adverb
nonprofaneness, noun
semiprofane, adjective
semiprofanely, adverb
semiprofaneness, noun
unprofane, adjective
unprofanely, adverb
unprofaneness, noun
unprofaned, adjective
Can be confused
Synonyms
1. blasphemous, sacrilegious, impious, ungodly. 2. temporal. 3. unhallowed. 5. low, mean, base. 7. desecrate.
Antonyms
1. sacred. 2. spiritual. 3. holy.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for profanely
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • I tell you,” insisted Philippi profanely, “there are no rooms for you to sleep in up-stairs.

    Nan of Music Mountain Frank H. Spearman
  • Behind him Trevison heard Corrigan raging impotently, profanely.

    'Firebrand' Trevison Charles Alden Seltzer
  • He could no more have said them than he could have profanely touched her.

    The Bishop of Cottontown John Trotwood Moore
  • He has lost control of his temper, and now talks unfeelingly, brutally, profanely.

    The Death Shot Mayne Reid
  • It must be something dreadful, or my master would not be raving so profanely.

    The Belovd Vagabond William J. Locke
  • They played together, profanely, with the idea that Nicky was after all divine.

    The Creators

    May Sinclair
  • That you come not profanely and carelessly, with common hearts, as to a common work.

  • Noisily and profanely they came, making a holiday of the impending slaughter.

    Cursed

    George Allan England
  • The Swede began to talk; he talked arrogantly, profanely, angrily.

British Dictionary definitions for profanely

profane

/prəˈfeɪn/
adjective
1.
having or indicating contempt, irreverence, or disrespect for a divinity or something sacred
2.
not designed or used for religious purposes; secular
3.
not initiated into the inner mysteries or sacred rites
4.
vulgar, coarse, or blasphemous: profane language
verb (transitive)
5.
to treat or use (something sacred) with irreverence
6.
to put to an unworthy or improper use
Derived Forms
profanation (ˌprɒfəˈneɪʃən) noun
profanatory (prəˈfænətərɪ; -trɪ) adjective
profanely, adverb
profaneness, noun
profaner, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin profānus outside the temple, from pro-1 + fānum temple
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 profanely

profane

v.

late 14c., from Old French profaner, prophaner (13c.) and directly from Latin profanare "to desecrate, render unholy, violate," from profanus "unholy, not consecrated" (see profane (adj.)). Related: Profaned; profaning.

profane

adj.

mid-15c., "un-ecclesiastical, secular," from Old French profane (12c.) and directly from Latin profanus "unholy, not consecrated," according to Barnhart from pro fano "not admitted into the temple (with the initiates)," literally "out in front of the temple," from pro- "before" (see pro-) + fano, ablative of fanum "temple" (see feast (n.)). Sense of "unholy, polluted" is recorded from c.1500. Related: Profanely.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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