transcendentalism

noun
tran·​scen·​den·​tal·​ism | \ˌtran(t)-ˌsen-ˈden-tə-ˌli-zəm, -sən-\

Definition of transcendentalism 

1 : a philosophy that emphasizes the a priori conditions of knowledge and experience or the unknowable character of ultimate reality or that emphasizes the transcendent as the fundamental reality

2 : a philosophy that asserts the primacy of the spiritual and transcendental over the material and empirical

3 : the quality or state of being transcendental especially : visionary idealism

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from transcendentalism

transcendentalist \ ˌtran(t)-​ˌsen-​ˈden-​tə-​list , -​sən-​ \ adjective or noun

Examples of transcendentalism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Patience Worth’s strange diction, large output, and mix of transcendentalism and Christianity seemed at odds with Curran, a homemaker who dropped out of school at 13. Joy Lanzendorfer, Longreads, "Ghost Writer: The Story of Patience Worth, the Posthumous Author," 14 June 2018 One of the prime doctrines of transcendentalism is that God, or divinity, permeates every aspect of nature. National Geographic, "Darwin's Theory of Evolution Roiled U.S. on Eve of Civil War," 5 Feb. 2017

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

First Known Use of transcendentalism

1803, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about transcendentalism

Share transcendentalism

Statistics for transcendentalism

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for transcendentalism

The first known use of transcendentalism was in 1803

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for transcendentalism

transcendentalism

noun

English Language Learners Definition of transcendentalism

: a philosophy which says that thought and spiritual things are more real than ordinary human experience and material things

More from Merriam-Webster on transcendentalism

See words that rhyme with transcendentalism

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about transcendentalism

Comments on transcendentalism

What made you want to look up transcendentalism? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

full of whispering sounds

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!