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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ During the midday meal the older children read edifying passages chosen by Nicholas from religious or secular history.
▪ It has been far from an edifying election.
▪ Let me present a medley of these edifying yarns.
▪ Most successful businessmen recognise that sensuality, not always of the most edifying quality, positively affects their sales.
▪ Neither case was an edifying example of law enforcement.
▪ Not an edifying way of vote hunting.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Edifying \Ed"i*fy`ing\, a. Instructing; improving; as, an edifying conversation. -- Ed"i*fy`ing*ly, adv. -- Ed"i*fy`ing*ness, n.


Edify \Ed"i*fy\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Edified; p. pr. & vb. n. Edifying.] [F. ['e]difier, L. aedificare; aedes a building, house, orig., a fireplace (akin to Gr. ? to burn, Skr. idh to kindle, OHG. eit funeral pile, AS. [=a]d, OIr. aed fire) + facere to make. See Fact, -fy.]

  1. To build; to construct. [Archaic]

    There was a holy chapel edified.

  2. To instruct and improve, especially in moral and religious knowledge; to teach.

    It does not appear probable that our dispute [about miracles] would either edify or enlighten the public.

  3. To teach or persuade. [Obs.]

  1. 1 That educates, informs, illuminates or instructs. 2 That enlightens or uplifts. v

  2. (present participle of edify English)


adj. enlightening or uplifting so as to encourage intellectual or moral improvement; "the paintings in the church served an edifying purpose even for those who could not read" [syn: enlightening] [ant: unedifying]

Usage examples of "edifying".

I was then quartered at the sign of the Four Crosses in Southwark, then kept by a worthy man, one John Dolman, with whom I had much edifying speech concerning predestination.

While we were bantering in this edifying fashion, the table had been laid, and we sat down to supper.

The earlier homogeneity of American society has been impaired, and no authoritative and edifying, but conscious, social ideal has as yet taken its place.

The Indians were driven off as slaves, and the Mamelucos, with their usual sense of humour, attended Mass as penitents on Christmas Day, with candles in their hands, and listened to the sermon in an edifying way.

Perhaps a work which should chronicle the opposite course, which should trace out all the devious courses through which a man of the world, a man of ambitions, drags his conscience, just steering clear of crime that he may gain his end and yet save appearances, such a chronicle would be no less edifying and no less dramatic.

The water looked as edifying as crystal, as clinquant as faery promises.

A century ago the pious Coopers used it not for portfolios, but for a gigantic Bible, which was thus displayed, opened each day to some edifying passage, in the Great Hall.

Nevertheless, if it has been in the least informative to our Sovereign, or to any extent edifying in its plethora of bizarre minutiae and arcana, we will try to persuade ourself that our patience and forbearance and the drudging labors of our friar scribes have not entirely been a waste.

The edifying example of the Anician family was soon imitated by the rest of the nobility: the Bassi, the Paullini, the Gracchi, embraced the Christian religion.

I have heard many other such edifying harangues, from my father, from my teachers, from our priests—and yours—all mindlessly echoing what they themselves had heard from generations long gone before.

Two officers of state, with a Latin interpreter, were sent in his name to the Roman court, which was transplanted to Avignon, on the banks of the Rhone, during a period of seventy years: they represented the hard necessity which had urged him to embrace the alliance of the miscreants, and pronounced by his command the specious and edifying sounds of union and crusade.