[ pri-des-tuh-ney-shuhn, pree-des- ]
/ prɪˌdɛs təˈneɪ ʃən, ˌpri dɛs- /
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an act of predestinating or predestining.
the state of being predestinated or predestined.
fate; destiny.
  1. the action of God in foreordaining from eternity whatever comes to pass.
  2. the decree of God by which certain souls are foreordained to salvation.Compare election (def. 5), double predestination.



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Origin of predestination

1300–50; Middle English predestinacioun<Late Latin praedestinātiōn- (stem of praedestinātiō). See predestinate, -ion
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for predestination

/ (priːˌdɛstɪˈneɪʃən) /


  1. the act of God foreordaining every event from eternity
  2. the doctrine or belief, esp associated with Calvin, that the final salvation of some of mankind is foreordained from eternity by God
the act of predestining or the state of being predestined
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

Cultural definitions for predestination


In theology, the doctrine that all events have been willed by God. John Calvin interpreted predestination to mean that God willed eternal damnation for some people and salvation (see also salvation) for others.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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