- an established or prescribed procedure for a religious or other rite.
- a system or collection of religious or other rites.
- observance of set forms in public worship.
- a book of rites or ceremonies.
- a book containing the offices to be used by priests in administering the sacraments and for visitation of the sick, burial of the dead, etc.
- a prescribed or established rite, ceremony, proceeding, or service: the ritual of the dead.
- prescribed, established, or ceremonial acts or features collectively, as in religious services.
- any practice or pattern of behavior regularly performed in a set manner.
- a prescribed code of behavior regulating social conduct, as that exemplified by the raising of one's hat or the shaking of hands in greeting.
- Psychiatry. a specific act, as hand-washing, performed repetitively to a pathological degree, occurring as a common symptom of obsessive-compulsive neurosis.
- of the nature of or practiced as a rite or ritual: a ritual dance.
- of or relating to rites or ritual: ritual laws.
Origin of ritual
Synonyms for ritual
Examples from the Web for ritually
Contemporary Examples of ritually
Bill Clinton administered the oath of office to de Blasio and then ritually nodded to inequality as a source of “moral outrage.”When Dems Loved Wall Street
January 6, 2014
His comment about being a Special Olympian bowler was just one of those things, and he duly, and ritually, apologized.Bonfire of the Inanities
March 22, 2009
Historical Examples of ritually
Acts are ritually repeated at the recurrence of the rhythmical points.Folkways
William Graham Sumner
Guilt is allayed by symbolically and ritually passing it onto another.After the Rain
Meanwhile, and above all, the negligent Vestal must be punished; and at once the sacred fire must be ritually rekindled.The Unwilling Vestal
Edward Lucas White
It's the way I shall always think of her—ritually clothed, and pouring out tea to her gods from sacred vessels of colonial silver!The Book of Susan
Lee Wilson Dodd
The idea that the powers of growth had successfully combated those of blight may have been ritually represented.The Religion of the Ancient Celts
J. A. MacCulloch
- the prescribed or established form of a religious or other ceremony
- such prescribed forms in general or collectively
- stereotyped activity or behaviour
- psychol any repetitive behaviour, such as hand-washing, performed by a person with a compulsive personality disorder
- any formal act, institution, or procedure that is followed consistentlythe ritual of the law
- of, relating to, or characteristic of religious, social, or other rituals
Word Origin for ritual
1560s, from Middle French ritual or directly from Latin ritualis "relating to (religious) rites," from ritus "rite" (see rite). Related: Ritually.
1640s, from ritual (adj.).
- A detailed act or series of acts carried out by an individual to relieve anxiety or to forestall the development of anxiety.