fa·​nat·​i·​cism fə-ˈna-tə-ˌsi-zəm How to pronounce fanaticism (audio)
: fanatic outlook or behavior

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The film explores ideas of fanaticism, unquestioning faith, and the exploitation and manipulation of young minds set against an eerie, seemingly endless sea of cornfields. Colin Scanlon, Redbook, 11 May 2023 None of the lurid predictions — dangerously accelerating sea-level rise, increasingly extreme weather, more deadly forest fires, unprecedented warming, etc. — are any more accurate than the fire-and-brimstone sermons used to stoke fanaticism in medieval crusaders. Richard Lindzen, National Review, 16 Apr. 2021 And yet, the Heat are not here by accident, having harnessed the prodigious talents of emerging star Bam Adebayo and the volcanic competitiveness of Jimmy Butler, and having translated their fitness fanaticism into crunch-time domination at just the right time. Eric Walden, The Salt Lake Tribune, 29 Sep. 2020 That word obviously is derived from fanaticism. Gordon Monson, The Salt Lake Tribune, 10 Mar. 2021 The search for life on Mars was starting to look like very expensive sci-fi fanaticism; after Viking, NASA moved away from life detection on other planets. Marissa Grunes, Discover Magazine, 6 Apr. 2023 For readers today, many elements in the novel will call to mind our own recent experiences with the coronavirus pandemic, ultranationalist politics, widespread religious fanaticism, the global climate crisis and senseless, brutal wars of attrition around the world. Michael Dirda, Washington Post, 2 Feb. 2023 Such is fanaticism! Ralph Benko, Fortune, 27 Sep. 2020 One of his main points: Just as war promotes poverty, tyranny, inequality and resource depletion at least as much as vice versa, so war promotes fanaticism. Keith Kloor, Discover Magazine, 15 Aug. 2014 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'fanaticism.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1652, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of fanaticism was in 1652

Dictionary Entries Near fanaticism

Cite this Entry

“Fanaticism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 May. 2023.

Medical Definition


fa·​nat·​i·​cism fə-ˈnat-ə-ˌsiz-əm How to pronounce fanaticism (audio)
: fanatic outlook or behavior especially as exhibited by excessive enthusiasm, unreasoning zeal, or wild and extravagant notions on some subject
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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