• synonyms


[suht-yuh-gruh-huh, suh t-yah-gruh-]
noun (sometimes lowercase)
  1. (in India) the policy of passive resistance inaugurated by Mohandas Gandhi in 1919 as a method of gaining political and social reforms.
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Origin of Satyagraha

1915–20; < Hindi, equivalent to Sanskrit satya truth + āgraha strong attachment, persistence
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for satyagraha

Historical Examples

  • It is the mistakes of the people that matter in a Satyagraha campaign.

    Freedom's Battle

    Mahatma Gandhi

  • And you are satisfied that the masses understand the spirit of Satyagraha?

    Freedom's Battle

    Mahatma Gandhi

  • It seems clear that Satyagraha cannot be equated with Christian pacifism.

  • In practice, Satyagraha is a mixture of expediency and principle.

  • The term "Satyagraha" itself was, however, a contribution of Gandhi.

British Dictionary definitions for satyagraha


  1. the policy of nonviolent resistance adopted by Mahatma Gandhi from about 1919 to oppose British rule in India
  2. any movement of nonviolent resistance
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Word Origin

via Hindi from Sanskrit, literally: insistence on truth, from satya truth + agraha fervour
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 satyagraha


Indian form of passive resistance, 1920, in writings of M.K. Gandhi, from Sanskrit satyagraha "insistence on truth," from satya "truth, truthfulness" (from sat- "existing, true, virtuous," from PIE *es- "to be;" see essence) + agraha "pertinacity," from PIE *ghrebh- "to seize, reach" (see grab (v.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper