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

Examples of rite in a Sentence

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 Incorporating both is a cheeky, feminist parody of a ceremonial rite involving a cast resin sculpture of a squash. Carolina A. Miranda, Los Angeles Times, 11 Nov. 2023 Some provided food and water, others street theater and rites of mourning for Hussein. Aatish Taseer, New York Times, 9 Nov. 2023 On a recent Tuesday evening, the familiar rites and sounds of Scrabble fill the room. Joe Heim, Washington Post, 17 Mar. 2024 In this rite, an earthen pot, symbol of fertility, is broken. Naman Ramachandran, Variety, 23 Feb. 2024 The shock of gun violence pierced an otherwise idyllic winter afternoon, with bright sunshine and temperatures in the 60s greeting a city ready to rejoice in what had become close to an annual rite of February as Kansas City’s team has become the dominant force in the National Football League. Colbi Edmonds, New York Times, 15 Feb. 2024 Her jersey number, 24, and her initials, AV, are also painted onto the floor and when the announcer introduced the home team's starters, each girl ran down the court and touched the initials as part of a pregame rite. Georgea Kovanis, Detroit Free Press, 11 Feb. 2024 Johnson, a woman who is a legend in her own rite is telling her unique story through her lens at 59E59 Theaters in Manhattan. Robyn Mowatt, Essence, 17 Jan. 2024 Nature, the human form, the mysteries of rites and myth — all of it has featured prominently in the work of Jonas, who has, in the past 50 or so years, evolved, gone (briefly) underappreciated and resurged, all the while innovating, even as her recursive body of work kept referring back to itself. Susan Dominus Emiliano Granado, New York Times, 1 Mar. 2024

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

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 16 Apr. 2024.

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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