Definition of civilization in English:

civilization

(also civilisation)

noun

  • 1[mass noun] The stage of human social development and organization which is considered most advanced:

    ‘the Victorians equated the railways with progress and civilization’
    • ‘But I would not, as an adult, be defending it as a high point of human civilization.’
    • ‘Conquest of nature is fundamental to human progress, and at the centre of the development of civilisation.’
    • ‘Indeed human civilization and perhaps even humanity itself would not have ever developed if not for the rock.’
    • ‘An order of the cosmos had been postulated, together with the claim that human civilisation is to mirror that order, so that everyone will know who he is and how he is to live his life.’
    • ‘His thesis is simple: the advance of human technology and civilization has propelled us into a world we are not evolved for.’
    • ‘The earliest such source comes from the ancient Sumerian culture, which was the first civilization on Earth.’
    • ‘Travellers often want to be constantly stimulated by the world around them and are genuinely fascinated by the diversity of human civilization.’
    • ‘As population increased, as civilization progressed, wise norms were formed for happy, healthy living.’
    • ‘That is why we have to insist, by force if necessary, that everyone else in the world also respect, and enforce, the minimum standards of civilisation and human rights.’
    • ‘The situation over there shows a level of chaos and complete breakdown of human civilization never before seen on the face of this good earth.’
    • ‘These factors, far from being narrow technical issues, capture the essence of social evolution and advanced civilization.’
    • ‘Their overwhelming urge is to recover what they consider to be their rightful position in the history of human civilization.’
    • ‘The evolution of civilisation and social organisation that checks and regulates the lust for revenge and other such instincts compel one to answer in the affirmative.’
    • ‘If human civilization is to continue to advance in the future, we must maintain and continually rebuild our stocks of social resources.’
    • ‘Rather than advancing human civilisation, as it had in the past period, it now threatened mankind with the most terrible forms of barbarism.’
    • ‘Technology would eventually destroy civilization, and it was only a matter of time.’
    • ‘The development of human civilisation is intimately bound up with the domestication of cereals.’
    • ‘The film, of course, is about human nature - and the clash between civilization and basic human desires.’
    • ‘Freedom of press is a measure of the development of civilization.’
    • ‘For thousands of years, music has played an important role in human civilisation, from religious and pagan ceremonies to rituals and social events.’
    human development, advancement, progress, enlightenment, edification, culture, cultivation, refinement, sophistication
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 The process by which a society or place reaches an advanced stage of social development and organization.
      • ‘Scholars began to discuss civilization as a unilinear process with races able to ascend or descend a graduated scale.’
      • ‘They're our nearest neighbours, and together we've been the greatest force for civilisation and economic and social development the world has ever seen.’
      • ‘On the contrary, in every organic process, the antitheses always reflect a unified totality, and civilization is an organic process.’
      • ‘The process of civilization not only brought improved individual self-control but also a change of attitudes and values.’
    2. 1.2 The society, culture, and way of life of a particular area:
      ‘the great books of Western civilization’
      [count noun] ‘the early civilizations of Mesopotamia and Egypt’
      • ‘Mayan civilization had collapsed by the sixteenth century, when Spanish expeditions reached the area.’
      • ‘Gradually, cereals became the basic food of most of the civilizations of antiquity.’
      • ‘I think western civilization is built on three fundamental and interlocking principles that form the Western world view.’
      • ‘Australia's Indigenous Peoples are the world's oldest continuous civilization: 60,000 years.’
      • ‘The building is clad in Aswan granite engraved with calligraphic inscriptions representing the world civilizations.’
      • ‘And it cherished a lot of the values that built our civilization as we know it now.’
      • ‘The ancient Mayan civilization was very advanced and had a sophisticated knowledge of science, art, and astronomy.’
      • ‘Over the next thousand years, by 1500, they'd developed quite an advanced civilisation, and most of us know it by the massive statues that line the coast.’
      • ‘Mazes and a range of labyrinth designs are found all around the world in many cultures and civilizations.’
      • ‘Moroccan experts work to restore the remnants of an ancient Islamic civilization.’
      • ‘When the Spanish landed in 1531, Peru's territory was the nucleus of the highly developed Inca civilization.’
      • ‘She found the study of this to be highly relevant to modern Western civilization.’
      • ‘Our eyes move past abandoned buildings, tombs of a civilization in decline.’
      • ‘Again, this civilization depended entirely upon geography.’
      • ‘He was looking at the product of a technologically advanced extraterrestrial civilization.’
      • ‘The most populous country, China has one of the oldest civilizations on earth.’
      • ‘After the fall of the Roman Empire the rising Arab civilizations began to cultivate melons.’
      • ‘They were feared as gods by the world's primitive civilizations.’
      • ‘He stated that the level of a people's civilization depended upon their environment instead of their ethnicity.’
      culture, customs, mores, way of life, attainments, achievements
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3 The comfort and convenience of modern life, regarded as available only in towns and cities:
      ‘in the UK nowhere is very far from civilization’
      • ‘Most come from rural backgrounds and are poorly educated, handicaps for anyone who wants to get ahead in the modern urban-commercial civilisation.’
      • ‘Despite her luck finding the logging road, it took Sara several hours to reach signs of civilization.’
      • ‘Jay looked around; they were very far out of town and civilization.’
      • ‘Some are remote from modern civilisation, others survive cheek by jowl with spreading towns and motorways.’
      • ‘She begged him mentally to stay alright at least until they reached civilization.’
      • ‘He enjoys the vast, unyielding power of nature much more than the bustle of city life and civilization.’
      • ‘But I had estimated the distance accurately and I reached civilisation well before the dark.’
      • ‘If he wasn't so dependent on her for his own survival, he would just get up and keep walking until he reached civilization.’
      • ‘Still he pressed onward, ever eager to reach any kind of civilization.’
      • ‘This makes life a bit difficult for the daytime angler, as it is a long drive from civilisation.’
      • ‘Yet as we rejoin modern civilisation in the city of Newcastle, this is not the final impression we are left with of our trip.’
      • ‘However coming home from a mining town to civilisation is a great relief.’

Pronunciation:

civilization

/ˌsɪvɪlʌɪˈzeɪʃ(ə)n/