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

fidelity

play
noun fi·del·i·ty \fə-ˈde-lə-tē, fī-\

Simple Definition of fidelity

  • : the quality of being faithful to your husband, wife, or sexual partner

  • : the quality of being faithful or loyal to a country, organization, etc.

  • : the degree to which something matches or copies something else

Full Definition of fidelity

plural fi·del·i·ties

  1. 1 a :  the quality or state of being faithful b :  accuracy in details :  exactness

  2. 2 :  the degree to which an electronic device (as a record player, radio, or television) accurately reproduces its effect (as sound or picture)

Examples of fidelity

  1. Yet as Reardon emphasizes early on, fidelity to facts was never the point. The same dinner with friends could appear over and over in Fisher's published work, rejiggered each time to make a different point. —Laura Shapiro, New York Times Book Review, 12 Dec. 2004

  2. It is a world familiar to all children, and it is this fidelity to child life that gives resonance to Hoffmann's tale and makes it an extraordinary work of art. —Maurice Sendak, Caldecott & Co., 1988

  3. Chaucer's patient Griselda proved her fidelity to her husband by resisting the prodigious reasons he gave her for being unfaithful. —B. F. Skinner, Beyond Freedom and Dignity, 1971

  4. music with much higher fidelity than on cassettes

  5. <they have never wavered in their fidelity to the cause of freedom>



Origin of fidelity

Middle English fidelite, from Middle French & Latin; Middle French fidelité, from Latin fidelitat-, fidelitas, from fidelis faithful, from fides faith, from fidere to trust — more at bide


First Known Use: 15th century

Synonym Discussion of fidelity

fidelity, allegiance, fealty, loyalty, devotion, piety mean faithfulness to something to which one is bound by pledge or duty. fidelity implies strict and continuing faithfulness to an obligation, trust, or duty <marital fidelity>. allegiance suggests an adherence like that of citizens to their country <pledging allegiance>. fealty implies a fidelity acknowledged by the individual and as compelling as a sworn vow <fealty to the truth>. loyalty implies a faithfulness that is steadfast in the face of any temptation to renounce, desert, or betray <valued the loyalty of his friends>. devotion stresses zeal and service amounting to self-dedication <a painter's devotion to her art>. piety stresses fidelity to obligations regarded as natural and fundamental <filial piety>.

Other Audio Recording Terms


FIDELITY Defined for Kids

fidelity

play
noun fi·del·i·ty \fə-ˈde-lə-tē, fī-\

Definition of fidelity

  1. 1 :  loyalty <They swore fidelity to the king.>

  2. 2 :  accuracy <I described the scene with fidelity.>



Word Root of fidelity

The Latin word fidēs, meaning “faith,” gives us the root fid. Words from the Latin fidēs have something to with being faithful. Fidelity is faith or loyalty. To confide in someone is to show trust in the person by telling her or him a secret. Someone who is confident has faith that he or she will do something correctly and successfully.



Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

February 10, 2016

to put in good humor

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image1037863653

Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?

spindrift kittly-benders duvet pince-nez
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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

TAKE THE QUIZ