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ethos Line breaks: ethos
Pronunciation: /ˈiːθɒs/

Definition of ethos in English:


The characteristic spirit of a culture, era, or community as manifested in its attitudes and aspirations: a challenge to the ethos of the 1960s
More example sentences
  • And the real thing is that the whole ethos, culture and drive of the company now is to put that right.
  • Much credit must go to the local community for the way they have embraced the ethos of community cohesion.
  • I was aware that the school had a culture of discipline and an ethos of personal improvement.
spirit, character, atmosphere, climate, prevailing tendency, mood, feeling, temper, tenor, flavour, essence, quintessence;
animating principle, dominating characteristic, motivating force, disposition, rationale, code, morality, moral code, attitudes, beliefs, principles, standards, ethics


Mid 19th century: from modern Latin, from Greek ēthos 'nature, disposition', (plural) 'customs'.

  • ethic from Late Middle English:

    At first this term referred to ethics or moral philosophy. It comes via Old French from Latin ethice, from Greek (hē)ēthikē (tekhnē) ‘(the science of) morals’. The base is Greek ēthos ‘nature, disposition’, source of ethos (mid 19th century).

Definition of ethos in:
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