schism

[ siz-uh m, skiz- ]
/ ˈsɪz əm, ˈskɪz- /

noun

division or disunion, especially into mutually opposed parties.
the parties so formed.
Ecclesiastical.
  1. a formal division within, or separation from, a church or religious body over some doctrinal difference.
  2. the state of a sect or body formed by such division.
  3. the offense of causing or seeking to cause such a division.

QUIZZES

HEED THE VOX POPULI, AND TAKE THIS WORD OF THE DAY QUIZ!

Test your memory on these verbal firecrackers from the week of June 29 to July 5!
Question 1 of 7
anchorite

Origin of schism

1350–1400; < Late Latin (Vulgate) sc(h)isma (stem sc(h)ismat-) < Greek, derivative of schízein to split, with -ma (stem -mat-) noun suffix of result; replacing Middle English (s)cisme, sisme < Middle French < Late Latin, as above

OTHER WORDS FROM schism

schism·less, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for schism

British Dictionary definitions for schism

schism
/ (ˈskɪzəm, ˈsɪz-) /

noun

the division of a group into opposing factions
the factions so formed
division within or separation from an established Church, esp the Roman Catholic Church, not necessarily involving differences in doctrine

Word Origin for schism

C14: from Church Latin schisma, from Greek skhisma a cleft, from skhizein to split
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 schism

schism
[ (siz-uhm, skiz-uhm) ]

A break within a church, such as the division between the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church.

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.