Definition of piety in US English:

piety

noun

  • 1The quality of being religious or reverent.

    ‘acts of piety and charity’
    • ‘The Italian-inspired architecture of the baroque period reflects a combination of religious piety and worldly opulence.’
    • ‘‘I'm not doing it out of any sense of religious piety or anything,’ Megan explained.’
    • ‘This follows the view that ‘useful ‘knowledge is that which enhances religious piety.’’
    • ‘An atmosphere of piety and religious fervour permeated the building, as the Catholics, many of whom had taken time off from work, gathered in front of a large photo of the Pope placed on the altar.’
    • ‘Commemorating the Crib means passing on the history of popular piety and religiosity.’
    • ‘Once there was devotion, piety, fervor, religion, holy priests, purity of heart.’
    • ‘Of course, I don't mind because this was the surest way of curing me of any religious piety.’
    • ‘Superstition more than prayer and piety characterized popular religiosity there.’
    • ‘The strain of keeping up the appearance of piety while lacking all religious conviction helped to turn him into a querulous hypochondriac whom it was difficult for his wife and son to love or respect.’
    • ‘They take advantage of the sentiments of people who think they are doing an act of piety and charity at the same time.’
    • ‘Although wealth is often inversely related to religious piety, the dissatisfaction amidst great wealth reveals a spiritual void that wealth cannot fill.’
    • ‘The former have been religions of piety with a strong tendency to deny reason.’
    • ‘The unintended but inevitable outcome of this religious subjectivism was the separation of religious piety from secular learning.’
    • ‘Most authors gave consistent coverage of themes, with the exception of lay religious piety and practice.’
    • ‘This was one act of religious piety that did not convey anger, but deepened communal solidarity.’
    • ‘True spirituality does not vest in any one religion or form of piety, it is to be found in the least expected of places.’
    • ‘Independent political inactivity now went hand in hand with religious quietism and piety.’
    • ‘Machiavelli certainly exaggerated when he observed in The Prince that, ‘owing to the bad example set by the Court of Rome, Italy has lost all piety and religion’.’
    • ‘His religious piety, even his self-critique, seems sincere here.’
    • ‘It also appeals to the emotion in a very direct way and gives us an insight into Bach's own personal religious piety.’
    devoutness, devotion, piousness, religiousness, religion, holiness, godliness, sanctity, sanctitude, saintliness, devotion to god, veneration, reverence, faith, religious duty, spirituality, sacredness, religious zeal, fervour, pietism, religiosity
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A belief or point of view that is accepted with unthinking conventional reverence.
      ‘the accepted pieties of our time’
      • ‘In Ireland the pieties of the old culture remained in place.’
      • ‘The hard-bitten cynic and skeptic smiles with inward pride when his friends chuckle over his well-wrought and ironic disdain for conventional pieties.’
      • ‘This flies in the face of centuries of pieties about the power of literature.’
      • ‘Instead, a ‘good citizen’ is someone who will stand up for conventional wisdom and affirm the pieties of the status quo.’
      • ‘Coming of age just after the Second World War, he was too old to be a child of the 1960s, but too young to accept the pieties his parents might have taken for granted.’
      • ‘Nationalists do not like us to question their pieties, especially their essentialism and attempt to justify the nation as always necessary and always right.’
      • ‘There is no need to pay excessive deference to the political pieties and givens of the region.’
      • ‘The result, drawn from their words and the journals of company members, is affecting advocacy theatre: while sometimes overly earnest, it never falls into abstract pieties.’
      • ‘The pretensions and pieties of national leaders merit an outpouring of derision and scorn.’
      • ‘For all the pieties that the press and television are merely objective observers of the political pageant, this is the moment when coverage decisions can affect the outcome.’
      • ‘The characters remained self-absorbed, oblivious to conventional morality or the pieties of political correctness.’
      • ‘She doesn't care what anybody thinks is appropriate behavior, or which topics are just not talked about, or about the liberal pieties, she snarls right back.’
      • ‘Where two pieties - feminism and multiculturalism - come into conflict, the only way of preserving both is an indecent silence.’
      • ‘These may sound like the conventional pieties.’
      • ‘Speech returned, haltingly, in two guises: information from the inferno and pieties from the government.’
      • ‘You remember the good times, the pieties you observed around one another.’
      • ‘It mocks our pieties, it doubts our concern, it questions our commitment.’
      • ‘And for so long the pieties, dogmas, and set of assumptions being taught on college campuses have been found on the far left.’
      • ‘Jotted down, her words are broken, repetitive, a string of conventional pieties.’
      • ‘Since then, the big guys have issued a running series of paper promises and formal commitments, none of which amounted to more than empty pieties.’
      dutifulness, obedience, deference, duty, respect, respectfulness, compliance, acquiescence, tractability, tractableness
      View synonyms

Origin

Early 16th century (in the sense ‘devotion to religious observances’): from Old French piete, from Latin pietas ‘dutifulness’, from pius (see pious).

Pronunciation

piety

/ˈpīədē//ˈpaɪədi/