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[dok-truh-nl; British also dok-trahyn-l]
  1. of, relating to, or concerned with doctrine: a doctrinal dispute.
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Origin of doctrinal

1400–50; late Middle English < Late Latin doctrīnālis, equivalent to Latin doctrīn(a) (see doctrine) + -ālis -al1
Related formsdoc·tri·nal·i·ty, noundoc·tri·nal·ly, adverbnon·doc·tri·nal, adjectivenon·doc·tri·nal·ly, adverbun·doc·tri·nal, adjectiveun·doc·tri·nal·ly, adverb
Can be confuseddoctrinal doctrinaire
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for doctrinally

Historical Examples

  • Doctrinally he states it adequately and holds it unhesitatingly.

    Natural Law in the Spiritual World

    Henry Drummond

  • Doctrinally, Buddhism seems to be less a religion than a system of philosophy.

    The Religions of Japan

    William Elliot Griffis

  • Men may be doctrinally depraved; they are much more depraved practically.

  • Doctrinally, of course, it is his duty to pray for the boat to sink and exterminate this crowd.

    The Ship Dwellers

    Albert Bigelow Paine

  • Socially it rescued her from the priest to make her the chattel of the husband, and doctrinally it expunged her altogether.

    Woman, Church &amp; State

    Matilda Joslyn Gage

Word Origin and History for doctrinally



"pertaining to doctrines," 1560s, from Late Latin doctrinalis, from doctrina (see doctrine). Attested from mid-15c. as the title of a text book (from Middle French doctrinal).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper