[ uh-pos-tuh-tahyz ]
/ 蓹藞p蓲s t蓹藢ta瑟z /
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verb (used without object), a路pos路ta路tized, a路pos路ta路tiz路ing.
to commit apostasy.
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Also especially British, a路pos路ta路tise .

Origin of apostatize

From the Late Latin word apostat墨z膩re, dating back to 1545鈥55. See apostate, -ize


a路pos路ta路tism [uh-pos-tuh-tiz-uhm], /蓹藞p蓲s t蓹藢t瑟z 蓹m/, nounun路a路pos路ta路tized, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 漏 Random House, Inc. 2023


What does聽apostatize mean?

Apostatize means to totally abandon or reject one鈥檚 religion.

It can also be used in a slightly more general way to mean to totally abandon or reject one鈥檚 principles, cause, party, or other organization.

The act of doing so is called apostasy, and someone who does so can be called an apostate.

These words typically imply that before the rejection, one had a strong connection or involvement. They are all usually used in a way that鈥檚 critical of such abandonment鈥攐r that at least implies that others who remain in the religion or cause are critical of the departure.

Apostasy is sometimes used more specifically to refer to a rejection of Christianity, but apostasy and apostatize are also used in the context of other religions, such as Islam.

Example: The pastor鈥檚 sermon condemned those who apostatize鈥攖he trouble is, the apostates weren鈥檛 there to hear it.

Where does聽apostatize come from?

The first records of the word apostatize come from the 1500s. Apostasy is recorded earlier and comes from the Late Latin apostasia, meaning 鈥渁 standing away鈥 or 鈥渨ithdrawing,鈥 from the Greek ap贸stas(is), 鈥渄esertion.鈥 The root apo- means 鈥渁way,鈥 鈥渙ff,鈥 or 鈥渁part.鈥 (Apo– is also used in the similar-sounding but mostly unrelated word apostle, which comes from a Greek term meaning 鈥渙ne who is sent forth.鈥)

To apostatize is to stand away from something (or someone) that you used to stand with. Most frequently, apostasy refers to the total rejection of a belief system that you used to subscribe to, especially a religious one. Even when apostatize is used in other ways, such departures are likened in seriousness to a rejection of one鈥檚 religion. For example, a politician who leaves their party for a rival one might be accused of apostasy or labeled an apostate. On the other hand, heresy (which can also be used in a literal or more figurative way) refers to the rejection or contradiction of a certain belief or doctrine within a religion or other system without abandoning it completely.

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What are some other forms related to apostatize?

  • apostatise (British English spelling)
  • apostatism (noun)
  • apostate (noun, adjective)
  • apostasy (noun)

What are some words that share a root or word element with apostatize?聽



What are some words that often get used in discussing apostatize?


How is聽apostatize used in real life?

Apostatize is usually used seriously and negatively. It鈥檚 most often used in reference to religion, but it can also be used in politics and other contexts.



Try using聽apostatize!

Which of the following actions is NOT associated with apostatizing?聽

A. renunciation
B. rejection
C. acceptance
D. abandonment

How to use apostatize in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for apostatize



/ (蓹藞p蓲st蓹藢ta瑟z) /

(intr) to forsake or abandon one's belief, faith, or allegiance
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition 漏 William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 漏 HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012