Word of the Day : November 23, 2010


verb VEN-uh-rayt


1 : to regard with reverential respect or with admiring deference

2 : to honor (as an icon or a relic) with a ritual act of devotion

Did You Know?

"Venerate," "revere," "reverence," "worship," and "adore" all mean to honor and admire profoundly and respectfully. "Venerate" implies a holding as holy or sacrosanct because of character, association, or age. "Revere" stresses deference and tenderness of feeling ("a professor revered by students"). "Reverence" presupposes an intrinsic merit and inviolability in the one honored and a similar depth of feeling in the one honoring ("she reverenced the academy's code of honor"). "Worship" implies homage usually expressed in words or ceremony ("he worships their memory"). "Adore" implies love and stresses the notion of an individual and personal attachment ("we adored our doctor"). "Venerate," incidentally, traces back to the Latin verb "venerari," from "vener-," meaning "love" or "charm."


Adoring fans venerated every item touched by the rock star's hands.

"In just two terms, he has become an important voice in the House, an institution that normally venerates seniority." -- From an editorial in The Courier-Journal (Louisville, Kentucky), October 15, 2010

Test Your Memory

What recent Word of the Day begins with "u" and means "to howl or wail"? The answer is ...


More Words of the Day

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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