adjective cer·e·mo·ni·ous \ ˌser-ə-ˈmō-nē-əs , ˌse-rə- \
|Updated on: 10 Jul 2018

Definition of ceremonious

1 : devoted to forms and ceremony
  • ceremonious courtiers
2 : of, relating to, or constituting a ceremony
  • a ceremonious occasion
3 : according to formal usage or prescribed procedures
  • the cold and ceremonious politeness of her curtsey
  • —Jane Austen
4 : marked by ceremony
  • a ceremonious procession





Examples of ceremonious in a Sentence

  1. She read the announcement in a very ceremonious way.

  2. a century ago everyday life was much more ceremonious than in our anything-goes era

Recent Examples of ceremonious from the Web

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

First Known Use of ceremonious


in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Synonym Discussion of ceremonious

ceremonial, ceremonious, formal, conventional mean marked by attention to or adhering strictly to prescribed forms. ceremonial and ceremonious both imply strict attention to what is prescribed by custom or by ritual, but ceremonial applies to things that are associated with ceremonies
    • a ceremonial offering
, ceremonious to persons given to ceremony or to acts attended by ceremony.
    • made his ceremonious entrance
formal applies both to things prescribed by and to persons obedient to custom and may suggest stiff, restrained, or old-fashioned behavior.
    • a formal report
    • the headmaster's formal manner
conventional implies accord with general custom and usage
    • conventional courtesy
and may suggest a stodgy lack of originality or independence.
    • conventional fiction

CEREMONIOUS Defined for English Language Learners


Definition of ceremonious for English Language Learners

  • : formal and serious : suitable for a ceremony

CEREMONIOUS Defined for Kids


adjective cer·e·mo·ni·ous \ ˌser-ə-ˈmō-nē-əs \

Definition of ceremonious for Students

1 : 1ceremonial
  • a ceremonious occasion
2 : 1formal 1


  • With each of them, as he entered, he ceremoniously shook hands …
  • —Robert Louis Stevenson, Kidnapped

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very hard to disturb or upset

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