[ kuh-thol-uh-siz-uh m ]
/ kəˈθɒl əˌsɪz əm /


the faith, system, and practice of the Catholic Church, especially the Roman Catholic Church.
(lowercase) catholicity.

Origin of Catholicism

First recorded in 1600–10; Catholic + -ism
Related formsan·ti-Ca·thol·i·cism, nounpro-Ca·thol·i·cism, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for catholicism


/ (kəˈθɒlɪˌsɪzəm) /


the beliefs, practices, etc, of any Catholic Church
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

Word Origin and History for catholicism



"faith and practice of the Catholic church," 1610s, from Catholic + -ism.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Culture definitions for catholicism


The beliefs and practices of the Roman Catholic Church.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.