Definition of circumcision in English:


Line breaks: cir¦cum|ci¦sion
Pronunciation: /səːkəmˈsɪʒ(ə)n


1 [mass noun] The action or practice of circumcising a young boy or man.
More example sentences
  • Ever since Abraham, circumcision was the way Jews marked their covenant with God.
  • Brit Milah, or circumcision, is performed on a Jewish male eight days after he is born.
  • In the past, young boys underwent ritual circumcision at a relatively late age.
2 [mass noun] The action or practice of circumcising a girl or young woman; female circumcision.
More example sentences
  • The programme has also helped to cut down the number of young girls lined up for circumcision in the area this year.
  • An Australian couple has appeared in court for allegedly organising an illegal circumcision of their one-year-old baby girl in Indonesian province of Bali.
  • Circumcision deprives girls of much of their ability to experience sexual pleasure.
3 (Circumcision) (In church use) the feast of the Circumcision of Christ, 1 January.
More example sentences
  • New Years is still observed as the Feast of Christ's Circumcision by some denominations.
  • Most secular celebrations also are tied to religious holidays, like Christmas or New Year's (the Circumcision of Jesus).


Middle English: from late Latin circumcisio(n-), from the verb circumcidere (see circumcise).

Definition of circumcision in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day oleaginous
Pronunciation: ˌəʊlɪˈadʒɪnəs
rich in, covered with, or producing oil; oily