[ahy-kon-uh-klaz-uh m]


the action or spirit of iconoclasts.

Origin of iconoclasm

1790–1800; iconocl(ast) + -asm on model of such pairs as enthusiast: enthusiasm
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for iconoclasm

Contemporary Examples of iconoclasm

Historical Examples of iconoclasm

  • In fact, the propensity to iconoclasm was not part of his constitution.

    Recollections and Impressions

    Octavius Brooks Frothingham

  • The causes for, as well as the agents of, this iconoclasm, differ widely.

    Stained Glass Tours in England

    Charles Hitchcock Sherrill

  • This iconoclasm had its time, and, one supposes, its office.

    Modern Society

    Julia Ward Howe

  • For all her courage and iconoclasm, she was deeply feminine in outlook and behavior.

    Emma Goldman

    Charles A. Madison

  • He could despise her iconoclasm and still utilize its intelligence to aid him in his climb.


    Ben Hecht

British Dictionary definitions for iconoclasm



the acts or beliefs of an iconoclast
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 iconoclasm

1797 in reference to breaking of idols; 1858 in reference to beliefs, institutions, etc.; see iconoclast + -ism.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper