Share this entry

Share this page

polytheism

Line breaks: poly|the¦ism
Pronunciation: /ˈpɒlɪˌθiːɪz(ə)m
 
/

Definition of polytheism in English:

noun

[mass noun]
The belief in or worship of more than one god: the polytheism of the ancient Near East
More example sentences
  • He purges them of all traces of polytheism, idol worship and superstition and all that is associated with these rituals, habits and traditions which are unworthy of man.
  • The nineteenth century notions of the evolution of religion from primitive animism to polytheism to monotheism have been falsified in tribe after tribe all over the world.
  • To have your ultimate concern distributed in different directions is like polytheism - worship of many divinities.

Origin

early 17th century: from French polythéisme, from Greek polutheos 'of many gods', from polu- 'many' + theos 'god'.

Derivatives

polytheist

1
noun
Example sentences
  • Islam does condemn in the strongest terms the beliefs and the practices of the polytheists and the idol worshippers, but it nowhere permits a Muslim to deal arrogantly or unjustly with them.
  • In their view, many people who claim to be monotheists are actually polytheists and idolaters.
  • Their abattoirs employ machine slaughter wherever possible and do not hesitate to employ pagans and polytheists, e.g. Chinese, Koreans, etc. to carry our slaughter.

polytheistic

2
Pronunciation: /-ˈɪstɪk/
adjective
Example sentences
  • The religion of the mudang was polytheistic and somewhat animistic.
  • An important point according to Avalos is that monotheistic religions offered fewer health-care options than polytheistic religions.
  • Hinduism is both polytheistic and monotheistic.

Definition of polytheism in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Top searches

= trending
Word of the day vicarious
Pronunciation: vɪˈkɛːrɪəs
adjective
experienced in the imagination through another person's feelings…