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spiritual

adjective spir·i·tu·al \ ˈspir-i-chə-wəl , -i-chəl , -ich-wəl \
Updated on: 8 Dec 2017

Definition of spiritual

1 : of, relating to, consisting of, or affecting the spirit : incorporeal
  • spiritual needs
2 a : of or relating to sacred matters
  • spiritual songs
b : ecclesiastical rather than lay or temporal
  • spiritual authority
  • lords spiritual
3 : concerned with religious values
4 : related or joined in spirit
  • our spiritual home
  • his spiritual heir
5 a : of or relating to supernatural beings or phenomena
b : of, relating to, or involving spiritualism : spiritualistic

spiritually

adverb

spiritualness

noun

Examples of spiritual in a Sentence

  1. Doctors must consider the emotional and spiritual needs of their patients.

  2. I regularly consult our pastor about spiritual matters.

  3. The Romantic composers saw Beethoven as a spiritual ancestor.

  4. France will always be the spiritual home of wine lovers.

Recent Examples of spiritual from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of spiritual

Middle English, from Anglo-French & Late Latin; Anglo-French espirital, spiritual, from Late Latin spiritualis, from Latin, of breathing, of wind, from spiritus

Other Christian Religious Terms


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spiritual

noun

Definition of spiritual

1 spirituals plural : things of a spiritual, ecclesiastical, or religious nature
2 : a religious song usually of a deeply emotional character that was developed especially among blacks in the southern U.S.
3 capitalized : any of a party of 13th and 14th century Franciscans advocating strict observance of a rule of poverty for their order

Examples of spiritual in a Sentence

  1. The congregation sang hymns and spirituals.

  2. sang a spiritual at the funeral

Recent Examples of spiritual from the Web

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

First Known Use of spiritual

1582


SPIRITUAL Defined for English Language Learners

spiritual

adjective

Definition of spiritual for English Language Learners

  • : of or relating to a person's spirit

  • : of or relating to religion or religious beliefs

  • : having similar values and ideas : related or joined in spirit


spiritual

noun

Definition of spiritual for English Language Learners

  • : a religious folk song that was sung originally by African-Americans in the southern U.S.


SPIRITUAL Defined for Kids

1

spiritual

adjective spir·i·tu·al \ ˈspir-i-chə-wəl \

Definition of spiritual for Students

1 : of, relating to, or consisting of spirit : not bodily or material
  • “Sometimes we can't know what spiritual damage it leaves even when physical recovery is complete.”
  • —Madeleine L'Engle, A Wrinkle in Time
2 : of or relating to sacred or religious matters

spiritually

adverb

2

spiritual

noun

Definition of spiritual for Students

: a religious folk song developed especially among black people of the southern United States


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