Definition of propitiate in English:

propitiate

Line breaks: pro|piti|ate
Pronunciation: /prəˈpɪʃɪeɪt
 
/

verb

[with object]
Win or regain the favour of (a god, spirit, or person) by doing something that pleases them: the pagans thought it was important to propitiate the gods with sacrifices
More example sentences
  • The Samhitas are hymns addressed to gods representing the forces of nature, followed by rites and sacrifices to propitiate those gods.
  • The death of Christ propitiates God, and the word ‘propitiation’ contains the thought of averting the wrath of God.
  • Plotinus and Porphyry felt reserve towards participation in sacrifices to propitiate the spirits.
Synonyms
appease, placate, mollify, pacify, make peace with, conciliate, make amends to, soothe, calm, humour, win over, satisfy; pour oil on troubled waters; Australiansquare someone off

Origin

late Middle English (as propitiation): from Latin propitiat- 'made favourable', from the verb propitiare, from propitius 'favourable, gracious' (see propitious).

Derivatives

propitiation

noun
More example sentences
  • He submits as the substitute for sinners who cannot possibly atone for their own sins; that is, he submits to the expiation (wiping clean) of that sin and the propitiation (appeasing satisfaction) of God's justified anger.
  • The third… is that of expiation, propitiation and reconciliation… [and] the fourth end, finally, is that of impetration.
  • In the context of hunting, young girls are the appropriate instrument for the propitiation of the goddess and the securing of her favour.

propitiative

adjective rare

propitiator

noun
More example sentences
  • Moreover, they regarded their coalition partners, the Kadets, as essential propitiators of the officer corps.

propitiatory

adjective
More example sentences
  • They must also offer a propitiatory sacrifice to the god worth fifteen drachmae.
  • God's displeasure can only be appeased, then, if a propitiatory sacrifice is made.
  • Sacred places, old dwelling sites, and cemeteries exist, but propitiatory rites are made individually.

Definition of propitiate in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day anomalous
Pronunciation: əˈnɒm(ə)ləs
adjective
deviating from what is standard, normal, or expected