[ fuh-nat-uh-sahyz ]
/ f蓹藞n忙t 蓹藢sa瑟z /
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verb (used with object), fa路nat路i路cized, fa路nat路i路ciz路ing.
to make fanatical.
verb (used without object), fa路nat路i路cized, fa路nat路i路ciz路ing.
to act with or show fanaticism.
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In the UK, COTTON CANDY is more commonly known as鈥
Also especially British, fa路nat路i路cise .

Origin of fanaticize

First recorded in 1705鈥15; fanatic + -ize

Words nearby fanaticize

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 漏 Random House, Inc. 2023


What does聽fanaticize mean?

To fanaticize someone is to make them into a fanatic鈥攁 person with an extreme and often unquestioning enthusiasm, devotion, or zeal for something, such as a religion, political stance, or cause. It can also mean to become a fanatic.

Much less commonly, it can mean to act in such a way鈥攖o engage in fanaticism or fanatical behavior.

Fanatic is typically used negatively to imply that someone takes such devotion too far, as in They鈥檙e considered religious fanatics due to their extreme practices. Close synonyms are extremist, radical, and zealot.

Fanaticize is most commonly used in reference to this sense of the word fanatic. When it is, a close synonym is radicalize.

But fanatic can also be used in a way that鈥檚 not negative but instead simply refers to someone who is extreme in their devotion or enthusiasm for an interest or hobby. For example, calling someone a sports fanatic means they鈥檙e an extremely enthusiastic fan of sports. In fact, the word fan is a shortening of fanatic. Fanaticize can be used in reference to this sense of fanatic, but it鈥檚 much less common.

Example: Followers of the movement are being fanaticized by online propaganda.

Where does聽fanaticize come from?

The first records of the word fanaticize come from the early 1700s. The base word, fanatic, comes from the Latin f膩n膩ticus, meaning 鈥減ertaining to a temple, inspired by divinity, frantic.鈥 The verb-making suffix -ize means 鈥渢o make.鈥

The devotion and enthusiasm of a fanatic goes beyond normal interest. It鈥檚 intense, extreme, and often unconditional, meaning it will probably continue no matter what鈥攅ven in spite of evidence that such fanatical beliefs are wrong or dangerous. When someone is fanaticized, their devotion becomes irrational in this way. The word is especially associated with people who have been made to believe in extreme religious or political views. When someone is fanaticized, it doesn鈥檛 necessarily mean there is someone directly doing the fanaticizing鈥攁 person may be radicalized simply by reading and watching videos, for example.

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What are some words fanaticize may be commonly confused with?

How is聽fanaticize used in real life?

Fanaticize is almost always used negatively, especially in the context of religion and politics.


Try using聽fanaticize!

Is fanaticize used correctly in the following sentence?

Cult leaders often try to fanaticize their followers gradually.

British Dictionary definitions for fanaticize



/ (f蓹藞n忙t瑟藢sa瑟z) /

to make or become fanatical
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition 漏 William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 漏 HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012