be·​atif·​ic | \ ˌbē-ə-ˈti-fik How to pronounce beatific (audio) \

Definition of beatific

1 : of, possessing, or imparting beatitude
2 : having a blissful appearance a beatific smile

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Other Words from beatific

beatifically \ ˌbē-​ə-​ˈti-​fi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce beatifically (audio) \ adverb

Beatific Has Latin Roots

Beatific—which derives from Latin beatificus, meaning "making happy"—has graced the English language as a word describing things that impart consummate bliss since the 17th century. In theology, the phrase "beatific vision" gained meaning as an allusion to the direct sight of God enjoyed by the blessed in heaven. Today, the word more frequently describes a blissful look or appearance. A closely related word is beatitude, which can refer to a state of utmost bliss or to any of the declarations made by Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount.

Examples of beatific in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web At the news that Celia, who joined a nursing order, has been crucified by natives while caring for plague victims, an image of Erin as Celia appears onscreen, transforming from a beatific saint on the cross into a rotting corpse. David Gordon, Harper's magazine, "The Forty-Year Rehearsal," 6 Jan. 2020 Under the wimple, her face had a beatific glow that lit up the stage. Matthew J. Palm,, "Orlando Theater Best of 2019: Featured actress, musical," 5 Dec. 2019 Baby Yoda hype has produced beatific meme-collection posts showcasing how many adherents would die for the li'l green cherub, speculations about what role Baby Yoda will play in The Mandalorian, and beyond. Wired, "Love Baby Yoda, You Must," 22 Nov. 2019 Meanwhile, nineteenth-century photographers such as Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgson) and Julia Margaret Cameron depicted idyllic images of children—beatific, cherished, innocent images. Lynne Tillman, Harper's magazine, "Roy Meets World," 25 Nov. 2019 Prager bounced her beatific year-old son, Francis, on one hip while gaffers and grips arranged the lighting for the next shot. Megan K. Stack, The New Yorker, "Alex Prager is a photographer and filmmaker who lives in Los Angeles.," 1 Sep. 2019 Petrenko conducted with a beatific look on his face, a warm smile, Dalai Lama-like, showing not so much happiness but serenity, even in the face of doubt and tragedy. Los Angeles Times, "Review: A shy Siberian conductor in Berlin may be just what the music world needs," 28 Aug. 2019 The result has his dancers alternately making beatific faces and hissing like cats. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: Moxie’s ‘Dance Nation’ moves in fits and starts as it explores young performers’ passions and doubts," 24 Aug. 2019 But instead of the beatific Mamas and Papas version, the mournful voice of Jose Feliciano rings out, signaling that perhaps the California dream has turned into something else. Andrew R. Chow, Time, "Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood," 29 July 2019

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

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First Known Use of beatific

1640, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for beatific

borrowed from Latin beātificus "making happy," from beātus "happy, fortunate" (from past participle of beāre "to make happy, gladden, bless," perhaps, if going back to *dwe-jo-, akin to bonus "good," going back to *dwe-nos) + -ficus -fic — more at bounty

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Time Traveler for beatific

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The first known use of beatific was in 1640

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Cite this Entry

“Beatific.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for beatific


How to pronounce beatific (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of beatific

formal : showing complete happiness

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More from Merriam-Webster on beatific

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for beatific

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with beatific

Spanish Central: Translation of beatific

Nglish: Translation of beatific for Spanish Speakers

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