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[rich-oo-uh-liz-uh m] /ˈrɪtʃ u əˌlɪz əm/
adherence to or insistence on ritual.
the study of ritual practices or religious rites.
excessive fondness for ritual.
Origin of ritualism
First recorded in 1835-45; ritual + -ism
Related forms
ritualistic, adjective
ritualistically, adverb
antiritualism, noun
antiritualistic, adjective
hyperritualism, noun
hyperritualistic, adjective
nonritualistic, adjective
nonritualistically, adverb
unritualistic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for ritualism
Historical Examples
  • On the other hand, the priests have cast their system in the mould of ritualism.

    Hindu Gods And Heroes Lionel D. Barnett
  • He was also an earnest religious man, and strongly opposed to ritualism.

    Clara Maynard W.H.G. Kingston
  • As yet, the higher forms of ritualism were totally unknown to him.

    The Brentons Anna Chapin Ray
  • Both hated ritualism; and both worshipped the Man in the Street.

    Fifteen Chapters of Autobiography George William Erskine Russell
  • At any rate, it is ritualism rather than religion that is now promoted by the cathedrals.

    A Year in Europe Walter W. Moore
  • The child is surrounded by an ancient circle of ritualism and custom.

  • But his work as poet and painter prepared the world for ritualism in literature.

    Old and New Masters Robert Lynd
  • No church in the country has less of ritualism in it than St. Paul's.

  • But whenever they talk of ritualism they always seem to mean the ritualism of the Church.

    All Things Considered G. K. Chesterton
  • She had addressed drawing-room meetings, she had aided in many a crusade against Popery and ritualism and other evil things.

British Dictionary definitions for ritualism


emphasis, esp exaggerated emphasis, on the importance of rites and ceremonies
the study of rites and ceremonies, esp magical or religious ones
Derived Forms
ritualist, 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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