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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ It would be quite inapplicable, however, to such a supplication as the final pericope of the present group.
▪ Let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplication.
▪ Our Lady of Lourdes looked at the doorway opposite her in a gesture of supplication.
▪ She looked back at Jack in wordless supplication.
▪ Something about this pious supplication troubled her.
▪ The last of the prayers, however, is still a supplication.
▪ The original series concluded with the supplication for Jerusalem.
▪ To the voice of my supplication.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Supplication \Sup`pli*ca"tion\, n. [F. supplication, L. supplicatio.]

  1. The act of supplicating; humble and earnest prayer, as in worship.

  2. A humble petition; an earnest request; an entreaty.

  3. (Rom. Antiq.) A religious solemnity observed in consequence of some military success, and also, in times of distress and danger, to avert the anger of the gods.

    Syn: Entreaty; petition; solicitation; craving.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

late 14c., from Old French suplicacion "humble request," from Latin supplicationem (nominative supplicatio) "a public prayer, thanksgiving day," noun of action from past participle stem of supplicare "plead humbly" (see supple). In ancient Rome, a religious solemnity, especially in thanksgiving for a victory or in times of public danger.


n. 1 An act of supplicate; a humble request. 2 A prayer or entreaty to a god.

  1. n. a prayer asking God's help as part of a religious service [syn: invocation]

  2. a humble request for help from someone in authority [syn: plea]

  3. the act of communicating with a deity (especially as a petition or in adoration or contrition or thanksgiving); "the priest sank to his knees in prayer" [syn: prayer]


Supplication (also known as petitioning) is a form of prayer, wherein one party humbly or earnestly asks another party to provide something, either for the party who is doing the supplicating (e.g., "Please spare my life.") or on behalf of someone else (e.g., "Please spare my child's life.").

Supplication is a theme of earliest antiquity, embodied in the Iliad as the prayers of Chryses for the return of his daughter, and of Priam for the dead body of his son, Hector. Richard Martin notes repeated references to suppliants throughout the poem, including warriors begging to be spared by the Greeks on the battlefield.

In Christianity, the prayer of supplication for health by and on behalf of the sick is referenced in early Christian writings in the New Testament, especially James 5:13-16.

One example of supplication is the Catholic ritual of novena (from novem, the Latin word for "nine") wherein one repeatedly asks for the same favor over a period of nine days. This ritual began in Spain during the Middle Ages when a nine-day period of hymns and prayers led up to a Christmas feast, a period which ended with gift giving. A contemporary Christian example of supplication is the practice of the Daily Prayer for Peace by the Community of Christ where a member prays for peace each day at a specified time. Philippians 4:6 says, "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God."

In Islam, the Arabic word duʻā (plural du'aat) is used to refer to supplications. Adʻiya may be made in any language, although there are many traditional Islamic supplications in Arabic, Persian and Turkish. In Islam, duʻā tends to mean personal prayer. The supplications Duaas of Prophets are given in the Holy Quran.

The word Ardâs ( ਅਰਦਾਸ ) is derived from the Persian word 'Arazdashat', meaning a request, a supplication, a prayer, a petition or an address to a superior authority. It is a Sikh prayer that is a done before performing or after undertaking any significant task; after reciting the daily Banis (prayers); or completion of a service like the Paath, kirtan (hymn-singing) program or any other religious program. In Sikhism, these prayers are also said before and after eating. The prayer is a plea to God to support and help the devotee with whatever he or she is about to undertake or has done.

Usage examples of "supplication".

Voice answered voice in dark supplication, strophe and antistrophe, summoning .

He prayed through all the frozen petitions of his expurgated form of supplication, and not a single heart was soothed or lifted, or reminded that its sorrows were struggling their way up to heaven, borne on the breath from a human soul that was warm with love.

He stopped suddenly before the end of his supplication and Maria pushed her fist into her mouth to keep from crying out.

For a moment he seemed without bearings, unformidable, his hands still stretched out in supplication, or helplessness.

There, above the altar, was not the figure of the Pantocrator he might have expected, but a depiction of a woman, standing, her hands upraised in supplication.

With Europe constantly in their minds, they were bewildered to find the worshippers not chiefly old and young women, but men also of all ages and of every degree, from the neat peasant in his Sabbath-day best to the modish young Quebecker, who spread his handkerchief on the floor to save his pantaloons during supplication.

Nathan put on his tallit and phylacteries and recited the blessing and the Akeidah and the Shema and other supplications.

People of the Aca, to be delivered to the five Elders:--it is, that to-morrow the maiden be presented in the temple, when, by the mouth of the Zuhua Kak, of the Virgins of the Flame, the Elders, and the people, penance shall be said before the Symbol of Xibal, Lord of Death, and afterwards supplication beneath the Disc of Life to Him whose raiment is the Sun, and to Viracocha, the Doer, Lord of Dawn, that our nation and our dwelling-place be no more destroyed by the Bursting Fires and Great Waters.

At this threat his tears and supplications began over again and with renewed force, and telling me that he was in utter poverty he emptied his pockets one after the other to shew me that he had no money, and at last offered me the bloodstained badge of his uncle.

They felt, or they fancied, that on every side they were incessantly assaulted by daemons, comforted by visions, instructed by prophecy, and surprisingly delivered from danger, sickness, and from death itself, by the supplications of the church.

In response to the Soviet threat, the Democrats consistently counseled defeat, supplication, and retreat.

Both pekes and bears had little black monkey-like paws, many of which were now raised as if in supplication as the ecologists approached.

Batu was so absorbed with his thoughts that he did not realize the emperor had finished the supplication until the mandarins began to rise.

The tears and supplications of my landlady had no effect whatever upon me, I felt I could not bear the sight of Mercy any longer.

His voice quivered with ridiculous emotion, his little fat red fingers trembled as he outheld them in a theatrical gesture of supplication.