Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

fanatic

play
adjective fa·nat·ic \fə-ˈna-tik\

Definition of fanatic

  1. :  marked by excessive enthusiasm and often intense uncritical devotion <they're fanatic about politics>

fanatic noun
fanatically play \fə-ˈna-ti-k(ə-)lē\ adverb
fanaticalness play \-kəl-nəs\ noun


Examples of fanatic in a sentence

  1. <because of her fanatical views, her friends know better than to discuss religion with her>



Variants of fanatic

or fanatical play \-ti-kəl\

Origin of fanatic

Latin fanaticus inspired by a deity, frenzied, from fanum temple — more at feast


First Known Use: 1550


FANATIC Defined for Kids

1

fanatic

play
adjective fa·nat·ic \fə-ˈna-tik\

Definition of fanatic for Students

  1. :  very or overly enthusiastic or devoted <a fanatic supporter>



History for fanatic

In Latin the adjective fanaticus, a derivative of fanum, “temple,” meant literally “of a temple,” though the more common sense was “inspired by a god” or “frenzied.” The word was borrowed into English as fanatic in the 1500s with this sense. In the following century the word was applied to members of certain Protestant groups who argued for their beliefs—in the view of most people—with excessive enthusiasm, acting as if they were divinely inspired. Eventually, fanatic was applied to anyone who showed extreme devotion to a cause.


2

fanatic

play
noun fa·nat·ic

Definition of fanatic for Students

  1. :  a very enthusiastic supporter or admirer





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up fanatic? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

marked by grandiloquent style

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

alt-5746713d76276

Which of these is a synonym of nonplus?

perplex reduce disapprove soothe
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ