Definition of doctrinaire
: one who attempts to put into effect an abstract doctrine or theory with little or no regard for practical difficulties
Origin and Etymology of doctrinaire
French, from doctrine
First Known Use: 1831
Examples of doctrinaire in a sentence
<a doctrinaire conservative, the columnist takes special delight in baiting liberals>
Did You Know?
Doctrinaire didn't start out as a critical word. In post-revolutionary France, a group who favored constitutional monarchy called themselves Doctrinaires. Doctrine in French, as in English, is a word for the principles on which a government is based; it is ultimately from Latin doctrina, meaning "teaching" or "instruction." But both ultraroyalists and revolutionists strongly derided any doctrine of reconciling royalty and representation as utterly impracticable, and they resented the Doctrinaires' influence over Louis XVIII. So when doctrinaire became an adjective, "there adhered to it some indescribable tincture of unpopularity which was totally indelible" (Blanc's History of Ten Years 1830-40, translated by Walter K. Kelly in 1848).
First Known Use of doctrinaire
Synonym Discussion of doctrinaire
DOCTRINAIRE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of doctrinaire for English Language Learners
—used to describe a person who has very strong beliefs about what should be done and will not change them or accept other people's opinions
Seen and Heard
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