- the freely given, unmerited favor and love of God.
- the influence or spirit of God operating in humans to regenerate or strengthen them.
- a virtue or excellence of divine origin: the Christian graces.
- Also called state of grace. the condition of being in God's favor or one of the elect.
verb (used with object), graced, grac·ing.
- Theology. to relapse into sin or disfavor.
- to lose favor; be discredited: He fell from grace when the boss found out he had lied.
Origin of grace
Related formsgrace·like, adjectiveun·graced, adjective
- "When a person expends the least amount of motion on one action, that is grace."-Anton Pavlovich Chekhov Complete Works and Letters in Thirty Volumes, Letters, vol. 8, p. 11, “Nauka” (1976)
- "When a clergyman is present, he is asked to say grace, often after everyone is seated. But in the case of a friend, he should be asked in advance if he would like to say grace."-Nancy Tuckerman & Nancy Dunnan The Amy Vanderbilt Complete Book of Etiquette (1995)
For the ancient Romans, grātia had three distinct meanings: (1) a pleasing quality, (2) favor or goodwill, and (3) gratitude or thanks. We find all three of these meanings in modern-day English. The first when we describe someone as having (or not having) grace: “Dancing, she had all the grace of an elephant on skates.” The second when we talk about giving or getting grace: “by the grace of God.” And the third when we say grace (i.e., “thanks”) at a meal.
So if you have something to be grateful for, you can say thank-you, grātia, gracias, or grazie. Just make sure you don’t give that something a coup de grâce.
— Amazing Grace: A hymn written by English clergyman John Newton, who participated in the slave trade before finding religion.
— Grace: Jeff Buckley’s sole studio album, released in 1994, just three years before his early death.
British Dictionary definitions for fall from grace (1 of 3)
- affectation of manner (esp in the phrase airs and graces)
- in someone's good graces regarded favourably and with kindness by someone
- the free and unmerited favour of God shown towards man
- the divine assistance and power given to man in spiritual rebirth and sanctification
- the condition of being favoured or sanctified by God
- an unmerited gift, favour, etc, granted by God
Word Origin for grace
British Dictionary definitions for fall from grace (2 of 3)
British Dictionary definitions for fall from grace (3 of 3)
Idioms and Phrases with fall from grace (1 of 2)
fall from grace
Experience reduced status or prestige, cease to be held in favor, as in The whole department has fallen from grace and may well be dissolved entirely. This expression originally alluded to losing the favor of God. Today it is also used more loosely, as in the example. [Late 1300s]
Idioms and Phrases with fall from grace (2 of 2)
see fall from grace; in someone's bad graces; in someone's good graces; saving grace; say grace; there but for the grace of god; with good grace.