adjective cer·e·mo·ni·ous \ˌser-ə-ˈmō-nē-əs, ˌse-rə-\

: formal and serious : suitable for a ceremony

Full Definition of CEREMONIOUS

:  devoted to forms and ceremony <ceremonious courtiers>
:  of, relating to, or constituting a ceremony <a ceremonious occasion>
:  according to formal usage or prescribed procedures <the cold and ceremonious politeness of her curtsey — Jane Austen>
:  marked by ceremony <a ceremonious procession>
cer·e·mo·ni·ous·ly adverb
cer·e·mo·ni·ous·ness noun


  1. She read the announcement in a very ceremonious way.
  2. <a century ago everyday life was much more ceremonious than in our anything-goes era>

First Known Use of CEREMONIOUS


Synonym Discussion of CEREMONIOUS

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>.
CEREMONIOUSLY Defined for Kids


adjective cer·e·mo·ni·ous \ˌser-ə-ˈmō-nē-əs\

Definition of CEREMONIOUS for Kids

:  1ceremonial <a ceremonious occasion>
:  1formal 1
cer·e·mo·ni·ous·ly adverb <With each of them, as he entered, he ceremoniously shook hands … — Robert Louis Stevenson, Kidnapped>


Next Word in the Dictionary: ceremonyPrevious Word in the Dictionary: ceremoniariusAll Words Near: ceremonious
July 06, 2015
categorical Hear it
absolute or relating to a category
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