Definition of observance in English:

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Pronunciation: /əbˈzəːv(ə)ns/


[mass noun]
1The practice of observing the requirements of law, morality, or ritual: strict observance of the rules the decline in religious observance
More example sentences
  • It has become the object of a global cult, and the money which it absorbs from the world is a from of practical worship, a daily puja, the ritual observance of its omnipotence.
  • I did not understand that God did not merely require the outward observance of certain rituals but rather a clean heart and a holy life.
  • In the management of its global operations, IBM the world's largest computer maker has been well known for its strict observance of clean business ethics.
rite, ritual, ceremony, ceremonial, celebration, practice, service, office, festival, tradition, custom, convention, usage, habit, formality, form
formal praxis
1.1 [count noun] (usually observances) An act performed for religious or ceremonial reasons: official anniversary observances
More example sentences
  • Guyanese American cultural traditions have been preserved by the religious observances of weddings, baptisms, and funerals.
  • Many religions go through ceremonies or observances of rituals to become pure or to be healed.
  • Lamas (religious leaders) skilled in rituals perform the necessary religious observances.
1.2 [count noun] A rule to be followed by a religious order: he drew up a body of monastic observances
More example sentences
  • This provides for all religious observances including fasting and Hajj to occur in all seasons during a person's life.
  • They had some institutions of religious observances, including public prayers and fasts.
  • Embrace religious vows, rules and observances and never waver in fulfilling them.
2The action of watching or noticing something: the baby’s motionless observance of me
More example sentences
  • Standing by her, eye to eye, he could see the tower in the distance behind her that he had noticed from his last observance.
  • I looked at him, searching for an elusive answer in my head, a witty reply to such careful observance.
3 archaic Respect; deference: the tramp gave them no observance
More example sentences
  • To those who cautiously venture into such a hidden world, Wheeler advises respectful observance.
  • They make it work by sharing basic values and respecting each other's observance.
keeping, obeying, observation, fulfilment of, following, performance, honouring, heeding
archaic abidance by


Middle English: via Old French from Latin observantia, from observant- 'watching, paying attention to', from the verb observare (see observe).

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: ob¦ser|vance

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