apos·​tate | \ ə-ˈpä-ˌstāt How to pronounce apostate (audio) , -stət \

Definition of apostate

: one who commits apostasy

Other Words from apostate

apostate adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for apostate



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Examples of apostate in a Sentence

an apostate from communism, he later became one of its harshest critics became an apostate to liberalism after he had gotten wealthy
Recent Examples on the Web An apostate from the faith, a heretic, or a schismatic automatically incurs excommunication, when the delict (or violation) is committed. Fr. Goran Jovicic, National Review, 13 June 2021 This would be the case also for an apostate, heretic, schismatic bishop, presbyter, or deacon. Fr. Goran Jovicic, National Review, 13 June 2021 Like many in the early 1970s, Weberman saw his hero as an apostate, who had forsaken his role as the voice of a generation. John Semley, The New Republic, 26 May 2021 Ahsoka Tano is a kick-ass Jedi apostate introduced in The Clone Wars animated series who ended up becoming a fan-favorite character. James Hibberd, EW.com, 30 Sep. 2020 Porter McConnell, the youngest daughter of Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, may be a true apostate. Horacio Silva, Town & Country, 4 Aug. 2020 Picture the apostate disembarking from the motorcycle, in a paisley shirt, a scarf, and tight pants tucked into high boots, and rolling into his human-sexuality class at Golden West. Nick Paumgarten, The New Yorker, 24 Feb. 2020 In their millenarian ardor and inflexible support for Israel, the neocons find themselves in a position precisely cognate to evangelical Christians—both groups of true believers trying to enact their vision through an apostate. Jacob Heilbrunn, The New Republic, 23 Jan. 2020 In several influential books still widely read today, Ghazali declared two long-dead leading Muslim philosophers, Farabi and Ibn Sina, apostates for their unorthodox views on God’s power and the nature of resurrection. Washington Post, 20 Feb. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'apostate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of apostate

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for apostate

Middle English apostata, apostate, in part continuing Old English apostata (weak noun), in part borrowed from Anglo-French apostate, apostata, both borrowed from Late Latin apostata "rebel against God, fallen Christian, heretic," borrowed from Late Greek apostátēs "rebel against God, apostate," going back to Greek, "defector, rebel," from aposta-, variant stem of aphístamai, aphístasthai "to stand away from, keep aloof from, revolt" + -tēs, agent suffix — more at apostasy

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The first known use of apostate was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Apostate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/apostate. Accessed 25 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on apostate

Nglish: Translation of apostate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of apostate for Arabic Speakers


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