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[pruh-pish-ee-ey-shuh n]
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  1. the act of propitiating; conciliation: the propitiation of the wrathful gods.
  2. something that propitiates.
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Origin of propitiation

1350–1400; Middle English propiciacioun < Late Latin propitiātiōn- (stem of propitiātiō) appeasement. See propitiate, -ion
Related formsnon·pro·pi·ti·a·tion, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for propitiation

Historical Examples

  • And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

    An Explanation of Luther's Small Catechism

    Joseph Stump

  • We have burnt it for a propitiation, ma'amzelle; it no longer exists.

    Fort Amity

    Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

  • And He is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

  • The first passage tells of the propitiation He made for the sins of the people.

    The Work Of Christ

    A. C. Gaebelein

  • There was then no idea of propitiation, of benefits to ensue.

Word Origin and History for propitiation


late 14c., from Late Latin propitiationem (nominative propitiatio) "an atonement," noun of action from past participle stem of Latin propitiare "appease, propitiate," from propitius "favorable, gracious, kind, well-disposed," from pro- "forward" (see pro-) + stem related to petere "to make for, go to; seek, strive after; ask for, beg, beseech, request" (see petition (n.)).

The sense in Latin is perhaps because the word originally was religious, literally "a falling or rushing toward," hence "eager," and, of the gods, "well-disposed." Earliest recorded form of the word in English is propitiatorium "the mercy seat, place of atonement" (c.1200), translating Greek hilasterion.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper