Definition of Hellenism in US English:



  • 1The national character or culture of Greece, especially ancient Greece.

    ‘the repudiation of Hellenism in Jerusalem’
    • ‘They had a shared sense of Hellenism and a common religion and language and often aligned themselves with native Greek concerns.’
    • ‘But even as he constructs Hellenism as an ideal standard for Romanticism and modernity, he at the same time binds that point of reference to the national context of Greece itself, and thereby ties it to the fate of the Greek nation.’
    • ‘The award recognises published works wholly or mainly about Greece or the world of Hellenism and carries a prize of £5000.’
    1. 1.1 The study or imitation of ancient Greek culture.
      ‘since the third century BC there had been a Latin Hellenism’
      • ‘The possibility of building such a world was precisely what Hellenism denied, and precisely what we affirm when we take God seriously.’
      • ‘This date is hardly synonymous with the heyday of Hellenism.’
      • ‘The Macedonian king, Alexander the Great, conquered Greece, Persia, and Egypt to create an empire, and he carried the idea of Hellenism to places as far away as India.’
      • ‘Wherever Hellenism has penetrated, we find the idea of it familiar.’
      • ‘The fact that the Jews - with the exception of a small minority - reject Hellenism is a strong testament to that ever-present Jewish drive and sense of mission.’
      • ‘In this way, Christianity was clothed with Hellenism, and theology had begun.’
      • ‘It is not as history but rather as a model of history that Hellenism matters.’
      • ‘For a discussion of Keats's Hellenism, see, for example, Aske.’
      • ‘He became a unifier, champion, and avenger of Hellenism against the barbarians.’
      • ‘He was much attracted by the Hellenism of the Renaissance, and both his prose and poetry are coloured by his concept of platonic love and his admiration for male beauty.’
      • ‘How faith in Jesus Christ made a difference with respect to Judaism or the culture and religious practices of Hellenism was still not clear.’
      • ‘Mack greatly overemphasizes the influence of Hellenism on Jesus and the Gospels.’
      • ‘All that the most severe judges are willing to concede to Romanity is that Rome spread the riches of Hellenism and transmitted them down to us.’
      • ‘Strongly influenced by Hellenism, he sought to fuse Greek philosophy with Judaism and to export this mixture to the world.’
      • ‘At nineteenth-century Oxford, as is well known, liberal university reformers mobilized under the banner of a secular Hellenism.’


Early 17th century (denoting a Greek phrase or idiom): from Greek Hellēnismos, from Hellēnizein ‘speak Greek, make Greek’, from Hellēn ‘a Greek’.