noun Ther·a·va·da \ˌther-ə-ˈvä-də\

Definition of Theravada

  1. :  a conservative branch of Buddhism comprising sects chiefly in Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia and adhering to the original Pali scriptures alone and to the nontheistic ideal of nirvana for a limited select number — compare mahayana

Origin and Etymology of theravada

Pali theravāda, literally, doctrine of the elders

First Known Use: 1882

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