- a distinctive doctrine, theory, system, or practice: This is the age of isms.
Origin of ism
- a suffix appearing in loanwords from Greek, where it was used to form action nouns from verbs (baptism); on this model, used as a productive suffix in the formation of nouns denoting action or practice, state or condition, principles, doctrines, a usage or characteristic, devotion or adherence, etc. (criticism; barbarism; Darwinism; despotism; plagiarism; realism; witticism; intellectualism).
Origin of -ism
Examples from the Web for ism
Dorothy Parker once noted that “the only ‘ism’ Hollywood cares about is plagiarism.”Trustafarians Want to Tell You How to Live
October 31, 2014
The storm of conflicting opinions centers on the Mrs. Thatcher who became a symbolic figure, even an ‘ism.’London’s Sober Goodbye to Margaret Thatcher
April 17, 2013
The ISM Purchasing Managers Index indicated that the manufacturing sector is expanding smartly.Why Wall Street Is Ignoring the Arrival of the Sequester
March 1, 2013
No bruised feelings involved, no accusation of an -ism, and no conceivable way of salvaging the “brand.”Our Insincere, Pointless Cult of Apology
February 28, 2013
The ISM reported that its purchasing managers index for manufacturing in October was 51.7, a bit higher than September.And Now for Some Good News: Jobs, Cars, Housing Are All Looking Up
November 1, 2012
I think I can't do better than inaugurate my new 'ism' by lunching there to-day.Cleo The Magnificent
To her the personal element in a creed is of more importance than the ism.The Book of Khalid
That is what everybody says when they want to prove any theory, creed, ism, or anything.Fair to Look Upon
Mary Belle Freeley
The point is, you must do it; no "ism" or esoteric agency can do it for you.The Eugenic Marriage, Vol 2 (of 4)
W. Grant Hague
There is strength in bayonets, but what stability is there in the Ism which supports them?
- informal, often derogatory an unspecified doctrine, system, or practice
- interstellar medium
- indicating an action, process, or resultcriticism; terrorism
- indicating a state or conditionpaganism
- indicating a doctrine, system, or body of principles and practicesLeninism; spiritualism
- indicating behaviour or a characteristic qualityheroism
- indicating a characteristic usage, esp of a languagecolloquialism; Scotticism
- indicating prejudice on the basis specifiedsexism; ageism
Word Origin and History for ism
suffix forming nouns of action, state, condition, doctrine, from French -isme or directly from Latin -isma, -ismus, from Greek -isma, from stem of verbs in -izein. Used as an independent word, chiefly disparagingly, from 1670s.
- Action, process; practice:vegetarianism.
- Characteristic behavior or quality:puerilism.
- State; condition; quality:senilism.
- State or condition resulting from an excess of something specified:strychninism.
- Doctrine; theory; system of principles:Darwinism.