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  1. the act of profaning; desecration; defilement; debasement.
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Origin of profanation

1545–55; < Late Latin profānātiōn- (stem of profānātiō) desecration, equivalent to Latin profānāt(us) (past participle of profānāre to profane) + -iōn- -ion; replacing prophanation < Middle French < Medieval Latin prophānātiō, for Late Latin profānātiō, as above


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

desecration, curse, mockery, blasphemy, profanity, impiety, crime, violation, heresy, offense, sin

Examples from the Web for profanation

Historical Examples

  • This is what Sunday might be made, and what it might be made without impiety or profanation.

    Sunday under Three Heads

    Charles Dickens

  • Weighed in this scale, what a profanation is this man guilty of!

    Clarissa, Volume 2 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • Their spirit of profanation and impiety arrived at the extreme pitch.

  • The entertainment of the proposition of depravity is the last profligacy and profanation.

    Essays, Second Series

    Ralph Waldo Emerson

  • Haggerstone and he were intimates were it not a profanation of the word, we should say friends.

Word Origin and History for profanation


1550s, from Old French prophanation (15c., Modern French profanation) or directly from Late Latin profanationem (nominative profanatio), noun of action from past participle stem of profanare (see profane (adj.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper