Definition of ritualize in English:


(also ritualise)


  • 1 Make (something) into a ritual by following a pattern of actions or behaviour.

    ‘interpreting football hooliganism as a ritualized expression of aggression’
    • ‘The 15th century saw a decline in the real value of chivalry, and though new orders, such as the Order of the Golden Fleece were created, tournaments survived merely as ritualized ceremonies.’
    • ‘In contrast to the secular West, a deep piety permeates everyday village life, even though it is often highly ritualised.’
    • ‘While upper-class dueling had become rare by the 1840s, highly ritualized forms of working-class fighting continued throughout the century.’
    • ‘The ancient, highly ritualized practice of falconry provided another source of positive associations for birds of prey.’
    • ‘Thirty-nine years after she first performed in Europe, surprising audiences with dances ritualizing everyday behavior, Anna Halprin debuted in Paris last September as the opening dance event of the Festival d' Automne.’
    • ‘Two somewhat ritualized markers of politeness are the offering of tea, coffee, and sweets to house visitors and taking turns buying rounds of drinks at a pub.’
    • ‘Meals are ritualized, and full of social and cultural meaning.’
    • ‘Many people have ritualized ideas regarding their use of TV.’
    • ‘And the songs are bouncy, fast-paced and even a little elegant - perfect for the kinds of celebratory and ritualized dances that they are designed to accompany.’
    • ‘It's an intuitive act, and you have to flow with it, whereas meditation is far more ritualized discipline, to reach that basic state where one is in control of the mind, where one is 100 percent focused.’
    • ‘Although people believe in an eternal afterlife, there is no clear understanding of its nature; people observe rules and try to reduce their grief by ritualizing the mourning process.’
    • ‘Culture is expressed through the use of language, the choice of setting and ritualized behaviours, all of which heighten shared understanding.’
    • ‘But the behaviourists say that we also ritualise everyday partings.’
    • ‘The wedding pictures of almost any couple include these ritualized customs: cutting the cake and dancing the waltz.’
    • ‘The school year is highly ritualized from the opening day of classes to graduation, with celebrations and performances, some of which involve parents.’
    • ‘In a vernacular society, aggressive behaviour is highly ritualised and serves social ends.’
    • ‘In this intricate system of exchange, community is founded on a ritualized recognition of interdependence.’
    • ‘The violence is more ritualized than in, say, American gangster films, so that it seems both shocking and unreal at the same time.’
    • ‘The Vatican manuscript, however, problematizes such a straightforward reading because, as this article contends, ritualized depiction is not the same as ritual itself.’
    • ‘The rabbis mandated the recitation of marriage blessings throughout the week of celebration, thus ritualizing the event.’
    observe, respect, honour, hold sacred, recognize, acknowledge
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Zoology Cause (an action or behaviour pattern) to undergo ritualization.
      ‘this ritualized action gives each animal time to assess the prowess of the other’
      • ‘Zoologists have known for over a hundred years that most animal fights involve ritualized aggression rather than injurious physical contact.’
      • ‘Chimpanzee youngsters thus acquire the majority, if not the totality, of their gestures by individually ritualizing them with one another.’
      • ‘However, even as they execute these ritualised social courtesies, there are suggestions that his long isolation has impaired his ability to behave in a wholly appropriate manner.’