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[suh-mar-i-tn] /səˈmær ɪ tn/
an inhabitant of Samaria.
(often lowercase) one who is compassionate and helpful to a person in distress.
any of the dialects of Aramaic spoken by the Samaritans in ancient Israel and until recently still spoken in Nablus.
pertaining to Samaria or to Samaritans.
Origin of Samaritan
before 1000; Middle English, Old English < Late Latin samarītānus < Greek samarī́t(ēs) dweller in Samaria + -ānus -an
Related forms
Samaritanism, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for Samaritan
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He next proceeded to learn the Chaldee, Syriac, and Samaritan dialects.

    Self-Help Samuel Smiles
  • The testimony of a Samaritan could not be heard before a Jewish tribunal.

    Jesus the Christ James Edward Talmage
  • Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?

    Jesus the Christ James Edward Talmage
  • The man who smokes, thinks like a sage and acts like a Samaritan.

    Familiar Quotations John Bartlett
  • There were none that returned to give thanks save this Samaritan.

  • The Samaritan was riding; for he set the wounded man “on his own beast.”

    The Parables of Our Lord William Arnot
  • Some good Samaritan had, and administered it, and Gubbins was consoled.

    For Fortune and Glory Lewis Hough
  • There was not a deal of hypocrisy in his nature, and now he did not attempt the part of Samaritan.

    The Crisis, Complete Winston Churchill
  • This girl had been kindly; she could do no less than be a Samaritan herself.

    Good References E. J. Rath
British Dictionary definitions for Samaritan


a native or inhabitant of Samaria
short for Good Samaritan
a member of a voluntary organization (the Samaritans) which offers counselling to people in despair, esp by telephone
the dialect of Aramaic spoken in Samaria
of or relating to Samaria
Derived Forms
Samaritanism, 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 Samaritan

Old English, "inhabitant of Samaria," a district of Palestine, from Late Latin Samaritanus, from Greek Samareia (see Samaria). A non-Hebrew race was settled in its cities by the king of Assyria after the removal of the Israelites from the country. They later adopted some Jewish ways, but largely remained apart. Figurative use with reference to the good Samaritan is first recorded 1630s, from Luke x:33. Related: Samaritanism.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with Samaritan


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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