[thee-iz-uh m]
See more synonyms for theism on
  1. the belief in one God as the creator and ruler of the universe, without rejection of revelation (distinguished from deism).
  2. belief in the existence of a god or gods (opposed to atheism).

Origin of theism

First recorded in 1670–80; the- + -ism
Related formsthe·ist [thee-ist] /ˈθi ɪst/, noun, adjectivethe·is·tic, the·is·ti·cal, adjectivethe·is·ti·cal·ly, adverbnon·the·is·tic, adjectivenon·the·is·ti·cal, adjectivenon·the·is·ti·cal·ly, adverbun·the·is·tic, adjectiveun·the·is·ti·cal, adjectiveun·the·is·ti·cal·ly, adverb
Can be confusedatheist deist theist Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for theism


  1. the form of the belief in one God as the transcendent creator and ruler of the universe that does not necessarily entail further belief in divine revelationCompare deism
  2. the belief in the existence of a God or godsCompare atheism

Word Origin for theism

C17: from Greek theos god + -ism
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 theism

"belief in a deity," 1670s; see theist. Meaning "belief in one god" (as opposed to polytheism) is recorded from 1711.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper