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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ He even extended the pattern to apply to the deity.
▪ On earth, too, the deities were exceedingly and humanly attractive.
▪ Originally religion constituted an abiding relationship not only with deity, but even more with place.
▪ The Holy Spirit is that part of the deity given us to enable us to pray.
▪ Their deity, Goddess Vankul Mata ji, rides on a camel and specifically bequeathed the animal to them.
▪ There were many ways of inducing the deities to reside in the shrines and temples.
▪ These might represent the deity, the donor, or neither.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Deity \De"i*ty\ (d[=e]"[i^]*t[y^]), n.; pl. Deities (d[=e]"[i^]*t[i^]z). [OE. deite, F. d['e]it['e], fr. L. deitas, fr. deus a god; akin to divus divine, Jupiter, gen. Jovis, Jupiter, dies day, Gr. di^os divine, Zey`s, gen. Dio`s, Zeus, Skr. d[=e]va divine, as a noun, god, daiva divine, dy[=o] sky, day, hence, the sky personified as a god, and to the first syllable of E. Tuesday, Gael. & Ir. dia God, W. duw. Cf. Divine, Journey, Journal, Tuesday.]

  1. The collection of attributes which make up the nature of a god; divinity; godhead; as, the deity of the Supreme Being is seen in his works.

    They declared with emphasis the perfect deity and the perfect manhood of Christ.

  2. A god or goddess; a heathen god.

    To worship calves, the deities Of Egypt.

    The Deity, God, the Supreme Being.

    This great poet and philosopher [Simonides], the more he contemplated the nature of the Deity, found that he waded but the more out of his depth.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

c.1300, "divine nature;" late 14c., "a god," from Old French deité, from Late Latin deitatem (nominative deitas) "divine nature," coined by Augustine from Latin deus "god," from PIE *deiwos (see Zeus).


n. 1 The state of being a god; divine characteristics, godhead. (from 14th c.) 2 A divine being; a god or goddess. (from 14th c.)


n. any supernatural being worshipped as controlling some part of the world or some aspect of life or who is the personification of a force [syn: divinity, god, immortal]


A deity ( or ) is a concept conceived in diverse ways in various cultures, typically as a natural or supernatural being considered divine or sacred. Monotheistic religions accept only one Deity (predominantly referred to as God), polytheistic religions accept and worship multiple deities, henotheistic religions accept one supreme deity without denying other deities considering them as equivalent aspects of the same divine principle, while several non-theistic religions deny any supreme eternal creator deity but accept a pantheon of deities which live, die and are reborn just like any other being. A male deity is a god, while a female deity is a goddess.

The Oxford reference defines deity as "a god or goddess (in a polytheistic religion)", or anything revered as divine. C. Scott Littleton defines a deity as "a being with powers greater than those of ordinary humans, but who interacts with humans, positively or negatively, in ways that carry humans to new levels of consciousness beyond the grounded preoccupations of ordinary life".

Various cultures have conceptualized a deity differently than a monotheistic God. A deity need not be omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, omnibenevolent, eternal. A monotheistic God is almighty, omnipresent, omniscient, omnibenevolent and eternal. Monotheistic religions typically refer to God in masculine terms, while other religions refer to their deities in a variety of ways – masculine, feminine, androgynous and gender neutral.

Historically, many ancient cultures such as Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome, Nordic culture and Asian culture associated or identified deities with natural phenomena, as their powers but not as causes. Some Avestan and Vedic deities were viewed as ethical concepts. In Indian religions, deities have been envisioned as manifesting within the temple of every living being's body, as sensory organs and mind. Deities have also been envisioned as a form of existence ( Saṃsāra) after rebirth, for human beings who gain merit through an ethical life, wherein a being becomes a guardian deity and lives blissfully in heaven. But in Indian religions, all deities are also subject to death when their merit runs out.

Usage examples of "deity".

Ignorant priests or astrologers administered drugs, concerning the properties of which they had no knowledge, to appease the wrath of mythological deities.

An old emeritus professor, Doctoran Hildegard, who was famed for his agnosticism, sipped his and announced that he now had evidence of the existence of the Deity.

Ai-Ete, or Ai-Ata, was the region of Ait, the Deity to whom it was sacred.

Pawnbroker Fang, who will sell the root to somebody like the Ancestress, who will squat like a huge venomous toad upon a folk deity whose sole purpose in life is to aid the pure in heart.

Lucksparrow had that it was fortunate another member of the profession should be at hand, and by the success with which the Archdeacon, dizzy and yet equable, concealed his own feelings when his visitor, chatting of Prayer Book Revision, parish councils, and Tithe Acts, imported to them a high eternal flavour which savoured of Deity Itself.

About to reload, Clyde heard indignant buzzes from the directors near him and realized that the heroic bust represented old Henry Argyle, the presiding deity in these precincts.

Conscious that the station which he had filled exposed him to some suspicions, Diocletian ascended the tribunal, and raising his eyes towards the Sun, made a solemn profession of his own innocence, in the presence of that all-seeing Deity.

Bodin, I say, lived on a small estate he had purchased, and attributed all the agricultural misfortunes he met with in the course of the year to the wrath of an avenging Deity.

His prudence rendered him averse to any great innovation, and though his temper was not very susceptible of zeal or enthusiasm, he always maintained an habitual regard for the ancient deities of the empire.

Deity who would punish Caddles with extreme vindictiveness if ever he ventured to disobey the Vicar and Lady Wondershoot.

The one working the bellows was Baal-Hadad, the other was Baal-Quarnain, Canaanite deities who had been living quietly for some thousands of years, since the last of their worshipers had died.

In early times the Greek worship was most earnestly directed to that set of deities who resided at the gloomy centre of the earth, and who were called the chthonian gods.

Part VII, Osiris was in many respects the Egyptian counterpart of Viracocha and Quetzalcoatl, the civilizing deities of the Andes and of Central America.

Their symbolism, like that of every other Deity, was coextensive with nature, and with the mind of man.

From the beginning until now, those who have undertaken to solve the great mystery of the creation of a material universe by an Immaterial Deity, have interposed between the two, and between God and man, divers manifestations of, or emanations from, or personified attributes or agents of, the Great Supreme God, who is coexistent with Time and coextensive with Space.