[ih-rot-uh-siz-uh m]
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  1. the sexual or erotic quality or character of something.
  2. the use of sexually arousing or suggestive symbolism, settings, allusions, situations, etc., in art, literature, drama, or the like.
  3. the condition of being sexually aroused or excited.
  4. sexual drive or tendency.
  5. an abnormally persistent sexual drive.
Also er·o·tism [er-uh-tiz-uh m] /ˈɛr əˌtɪz əm/.

Origin of eroticism

First recorded in 1880–85; erotic + -ism
Related formse·rot·i·cist, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for erotism

Historical Examples of erotism

British Dictionary definitions for erotism


erotism (ˈɛrəˌtɪzəm)

  1. erotic quality or nature
  2. the use of sexually arousing or pleasing symbolism in literature or art
  3. sexual excitement or desire
  4. a tendency to exalt sex
  5. psychol an overt display of sexual behaviour
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 erotism



1881, from erotic + -ism.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

erotism in Medicine


  1. Eroticism.


  1. Sexual excitement.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.