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 beatific (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 Vision Savior, who worked in Big Oil and lived year-round in Saudi Arabia, flashed me a beatific smile, then turned to greet a family of eight. Andrew Kay, Longreads, 17 July 2021 Her life and legacy are secure, as a committed activist, a devoted theologian, a brilliant speaker, and the unheralded muse behind the most beatific lyrics in the Greatest Speech in American History. Patrick J. Sauer, Essence, 31 Mar. 2021 Action flicks that have come since — including the forgettable remake from 2015 — never quite reach the emotionally rich, downright beatific final note of Point Break. Alison Willmore, Vulture, 22 Feb. 2021 Osaka gently raised her racquet above her head in victory, and that beatific smile spread across her face. Gerald Marzorati, The New Yorker, 20 Feb. 2021 Idyllic imagery of nature, with the camera taking flight through treetops, leads to a closeup of the beatific face of the boy’s mother. Alex Ross, The New Yorker, 8 Feb. 2021 But his odd little picture, with its deep lavender skies and beatific glow, has been a consistent visual stand-in for Brook Farm. Globe Staff,, 28 Jan. 2021 Movies serve up beatific visions of small towns as hearths of the nation in which salt-of-the-earth communities eschew the rat-race lifestyle, uphold simple virtues, and bake apple pies for each other. Stephen Humphries, The Christian Science Monitor, 16 Dec. 2020 The expression on the face of Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister, was beatific. David Pryce-jones, National Review, 3 Dec. 2020

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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Last Updated

28 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Beatific.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Sep. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of beatific

: showing complete happiness

More from Merriam-Webster on beatific

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for beatific

Nglish: Translation of beatific for Spanish Speakers


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