- a person who shows zeal.
- an excessively zealous person; fanatic.
- (initial capital letter) a member of a radical, warlike, ardently patriotic group of Jews in Judea, particularly prominent from a.d. 69 to 81, advocating the violent overthrow of Roman rule and vigorously resisting the efforts of the Romans and their supporters to heathenize the Jews.
Origin of zealot
SynonymsSee more synonyms for zealot on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for zealot
Kirsten Powers talks to the author of 'Zealot' about the double standard.Jesus Needs Reza Aslan, Author of 'Zealot'
August 11, 2013
For me,” said Pacino, “it was always the opportunity just to be able to explore the whole idea of a zealot.
Clad in black, Al Pacino tells Gina Piccalo he loved playing Jack Kevorkian because he was a "zealot."
I was sure the owner committed the cardinal sin of improperly storing his wine, and I smote him with all the fervor of a zealot.The Myth About Old Wine
January 26, 2010
The more confident right-wing Republicans become, the more likely they will nominate a Palin-like zealot in 2012.Why the Democrats Should Lose
October 30, 2009
He realized that Strom was a zealot, and he knew he would not hesitate to kill.In the Orbit of Saturn
Roman Frederick Starzl
But thrice woe to the artisan who makes himself the zealot of the Dogma!The Parisians, Complete
The old man's voice was again the rapt and fiery utterance of the zealot.The Roof Tree
Charles Neville Buck
I observed the trial of a zealot who had been burned for heresy.Adventures in the Moon, and Other Worlds
John Russell Russell
But the zealot Solomon Petit met with unexpected opposition.History of the Jews, Vol. III (of 6)
- an immoderate, fanatical, or extremely zealous adherent to a cause, esp a religious one
- any of the members of an extreme Jewish sect or political party that resisted all aspects of Roman rule in Palestine in the 1st century ad
Word Origin and History for zealot
c.1300, "member of a militant 1st century Jewish sect which fiercely resisted the Romans in Palestine," from Late Latin Zelotes, from Greek zelotes "one who is a zealous follower," from zeloun "to be zealous," from zelos "zeal" (see zeal). Extended sense of "a fanatical enthusiast" first recorded 1630s.