[ jan-suh-niz-uh m ]
/ ˈdʒæn səˌnɪz əm /


the doctrinal system of Cornelis Jansen and his followers, denying free will and maintaining that human nature is corrupt and that Christ died for the elect and not for all humanity.

Origin of Jansenism

From the French word jansénisme, dating back to 1650–60. See Jansen, -ism
Related formsJan·sen·ist, nounJan·sen·is·tic, Jan·sen·is·ti·cal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for jansenism

British Dictionary definitions for jansenism


/ (ˈdʒænsəˌnɪzəm) /


RC Church the doctrine of the Cornelis Jansen and his disciples, who maintained that salvation was limited to those subject to a supernatural determinism, the rest being destined to perdition
the religious movement arising from these doctrines
Derived FormsJansenist, noun, adjectiveJansenistic or Jansenistical, adjective
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 jansenism



1650s, in reference to doctrine of Cornelius Jansen (1585-1638), Catholic bishop of Ypres, who maintained the perverseness and inability for good of the natural human will. Related: Jansenist.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper