Definition of rectitude in US English:



  • Morally correct behavior or thinking; righteousness.

    ‘Maddie is a model of rectitude’
    • ‘He now seems more than ever convinced of his own rectitude, more certain that his words and actions are necessarily benevolent.’
    • ‘It is therefore about American self-respect, rightness, and a sense of moral rectitude.’
    • ‘The emphasis here is on exemplary, individual acts of moral protest, not on ideological rectitude.’
    • ‘That doesn't sound at all like a person convinced of his own rectitude.’
    • ‘One excellent way to forget it is to focus with righteous rectitude on the evils of others while focusing on the nobility of oneself.’
    • ‘They will, however, be loath to permit deviant minorities to wander from widely acknowledged paths of rectitude.’
    • ‘We know that he has the moral rectitude to stand up to the vilest attacks and pressure.’
    • ‘And if they did not know it - if they were genuinely convinced of their own rectitude - can we call them evil?’
    • ‘Is there another group that seeks the path of rectitude and moderation with the same fervor?’
    • ‘It brings a whole new meaning to moral rectitude.’
    • ‘However they range from the model of rectitude to the reprobate, from the intellectual to the ignorant, we vary more.’
    • ‘Suffering does not necessarily confer saintliness or rectitude.’
    • ‘She's high-strung, suspicious and full of moral rectitude.’
    • ‘In recent years, Japan, once a model of fiscal rectitude, spent wildly on public works projects in an effort to stimulate the economy.’
    • ‘In class they would study hard; in the dorms they would be models of rectitude and self-discipline.’
    • ‘The ‘devoting’ of the people to God was a demonstration of the divine rectitude and justice.’
    • ‘There has been no catharsis of moral or strategic rectitude.’
    • ‘We also stand for fiscal rectitude and law and order.’
    • ‘He is a model of moral rectitude, unabashed pragmatism, voluminous machismo and carnal fortification.’
    • ‘If more nudity is the conduit by which these ends are achieved, then so be it, and to hell with moral rectitude.’
    righteousness, goodness, virtue, moral virtue, morality, honour, honourableness, integrity, principle, probity, honesty, right-mindedness, trustworthiness, truthfulness, uprightness, upstandingness, good character, scrupulousness, decency, fairness, equity, justice
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Late Middle English (denoting straightness): from Old French, from late Latin rectitudo, from Latin rectus ‘right, straight’.