adjective cer·e·mo·ni·al \ˌser-ə-ˈmō-nē-əl, ˌse-rə-\

: used in or done as part of a ceremony

: including a ceremony : marked by a ceremony

: without real power or influence

Full Definition of CEREMONIAL

:  marked by, involved in, or belonging to ceremony :  stressing careful attention to form and detail <ceremonial rites>
:  having no real power or influence <his new position is largely ceremonial>
cer·e·mo·ni·al·ism \-ə-ˌli-zəm\ noun
cer·e·mo·ni·al·ist \-ə-list\ noun
cer·e·mo·ni·al·ly \-ə-lē\ adverb

Examples of CEREMONIAL

  1. The tribe has different ceremonial masks for each ceremony.
  2. His new position is largely ceremonial because all the decisions are actually made by a committee.

First Known Use of CEREMONIAL

14th century

Synonym Discussion of CEREMONIAL

ceremonial, ceremonious, formal, conventional mean marked by attention to or adhering strictly to prescribed forms. ceremonial and ceremonious both imply strict attention to what is prescribed by custom or by ritual, but ceremonial applies to things that are associated with ceremonies <a ceremonial offering>, ceremonious to persons given to ceremony or to acts attended by ceremony <made his ceremonious entrance>. formal applies both to things prescribed by and to persons obedient to custom and may suggest stiff, restrained, or old-fashioned behavior <a formal report> <the headmaster's formal manner>. conventional implies accord with general custom and usage <conventional courtesy> and may suggest a stodgy lack of originality or independence <conventional fiction>.



: a special ceremony

Full Definition of CEREMONIAL

:  a ceremonial act, action, or system

Examples of CEREMONIAL

  1. a number of religious ceremonials
  2. <the funeral of a pope is usually marked by rich pageantry and elaborate ceremonials>

First Known Use of CEREMONIAL

14th century


Next Word in the Dictionary: ceremonial lawPrevious Word in the Dictionary: cerementAll Words Near: ceremonial
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