rite

noun

1
a
: a prescribed form or manner governing the words or actions for a ceremony
b
: the ceremonial practices of a church or group of churches
2
: a ceremonial act or action
initiation rites
3
: a division of the Christian church using a distinctive liturgy

Example Sentences

Incense is often burned in their religious rites. the annual summer rite of loading up the car for the big family vacation
Recent Examples on the Web The process is anxiety provoking and enthralling—a medical school initiation rite with almost religious overtones. National Geographic, 13 Jan. 2023 Hundreds of dollars, pride and fantasy football’s greatest rite—bragging mercilessly—were on the line. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, 9 Jan. 2023 In 2021, Francis revoked a signature liturgical decision of Pope Benedict by imposing restrictions on the old Latin Mass, a rite favored by some traditionalists. Stefano Pitrelli, Washington Post, 5 Jan. 2023 Afterward, Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re passed around the former pope’s coffin with incense, a traditional and symbolic funeral rite. Eric J. Lyman, USA TODAY, 5 Jan. 2023 McCabe performed a symbolic incensing rite, rounding the coffin and going to each table. Nushrat Rahman, Detroit Free Press, 22 Dec. 2022 During those eight days, the elders perform a bangil rite, which involves the reading of a biographical chant of the deceased. Donna Sarkar, Discover Magazine, 4 Oct. 2022 In the court’s 233-year history, no African American woman has participated in this rite and gone on to decide the law of the land. Alexandra Meeks, CNN, 30 Sep. 2022 Netflix also dropped a first look teaser back in 2021, featuring Tom Sturridge as the protagonist, and Charles Dance as Roderick Burgess, the occultist who attempts to capture Dream in a mystical rite. Philip Ellis And Milan Polk, Men's Health, 7 June 2022 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Middle English, from Latin ritus; akin to Greek arithmos number — more at arithmetic

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of rite was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near rite

Cite this Entry

“Rite.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rite. Accessed 28 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition

rite

noun
1
a
: a fixed form for a ceremony
b
: the ceremonial practices of a church or group of churches
2
: a ceremonial act or action

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