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expiatory

[ek-spee-uh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee]
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adjective
  1. able to make atonement or expiation; offered by way of expiation: expiatory sacrifices.
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Origin of expiatory

1540–50; < Late Latin expiātōrius, equivalent to expiā(re) (see expiate) + -tōrius -tory1
Related formsnon·ex·pi·a·to·ry, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

propitiatoryconciliatorylustralpurgatorialconciliativeexpiable

Examples from the Web for expiatory

Historical Examples

  • We must offer an expiatory sacrifice to Oromasis, for, awful thought!

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete

    Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

  • This practice—save the expiatory offerings—was adopted by the Christians.

    Pagan and Christian Rome

    Rodolfo Lanciani

  • Remorse goaded me to desperation,—desperation prompted the expiatory vow.

    Ernest Linwood

    Caroline Lee Hentz

  • It would be an infringement of the sacredness of his expiatory vow.

    Ernest Linwood

    Caroline Lee Hentz

  • For this fatal error he offered his own blood as an expiatory sacrifice.


British Dictionary definitions for expiatory

expiatory

adjective
  1. capable of making expiation
  2. given or offered in expiation
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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 expiatory

adj.

1540s, from Latin expiatorius, from expiatus, past participle of expiare (see expiation).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper