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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Veneration \Ven`er*a"tion\, n. [L. veneratio: cf. F. v['e]n['e]ration.] The act of venerating, or the state of being venerated; the highest degree of respect and reverence; respect mingled with awe; a feeling or sentimental excited by the dignity, wisdom, or superiority of a person, by sacredness of character, by consecration to sacred services, or by hallowed associations.

We find a secret awe and veneration for one who moves about us in regular and illustrious course of virtue.

Syn: Awe; reverence; respect. See Reverence.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

early 15c., from Old French veneracion, from Latin venerationem (nominative veneratio) "reverence, profoundest respect," noun of action from past participle stem of venerari "to worship, revere," from venus (genitive veneris) "beauty, love, desire" (see Venus).


n. 1 The act of venerating or the state of being venerated. 2 (senseid en reverence)profound reverence, respect or awe. 3 religious zeal, idolatry or devotion.

  1. n. a profound emotion inspired by a deity; "the fear of God" [syn: fear, reverence, awe]

  2. religious zeal; willingness to serve God [syn: idolatry, devotion, cultism]


Veneration ( Latinveneratio or dulia, Greek δουλεία, douleia), or veneration of saints, is the act of honoring a saint, a person who has been identified as having a high degree of sanctity or holiness. Angels are shown similar veneration in many religions. Philologically, "to venerate" derives from the Latin verb, venerare, meaning to regard with reverence and respect. Veneration of saints is practiced, formally or informally, by adherents of some branches of all major religions, including Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Islam, and Buddhism.

Within Christianity, veneration is practiced by groups such as the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Roman Catholic, and Eastern Catholic Churches, all of which have varying types of canonization or glorification procedures. In some Christian denominations, veneration is shown outwardly by respectfully bowing or making the sign of the cross before a saint's icon, relics, or statue, or by going on pilgrimage to sites associated with saints. The practice of veneration is deemed heretical by iconoclastic denominations.

Hinduism has a long tradition of veneration of saints, expressed toward various gurus and teachers of sanctity, both living and dead. Branches of Buddhism include formal liturgical worship of saints, with Mahayana Buddhism classifying degrees of sainthood.

In Islam, veneration of saints is practiced by the adherents of Sunni Islam (for example Barelvism etc), Shia Islam and Sufism, and in many parts of Southeast Asia, along with " folk Islam", which often incorporates local beliefs and practices. Other sects, such as Wahhabists etc., abhor the practice.

In Judaism, there is no classical or formal recognition of saints, but there is a long history of reverence shown toward biblical heroes and martyrs. In some regions, for example within Judaism in Morocco, there is a long and widespread tradition of saint veneration.

Usage examples of "veneration".

Thirdly, because it would be opposed to the veneration of this sacrament, if any substance were there, which could not be adored with adoration of latria.

Like all the other boys of their age except Carlos Alcazar, who boasted about having passed the test they looked at those women from afar, with veneration and fear.

I esteem it also a peculiar advantage, that I succeed to a sovereign whose constant regards for the rights and liberties of his subjects, and whose desire to promote the amelioration of the laws and institutions of the country, have rendered his name the object of general attachment and veneration.

Her solitude daily increased, as the youth, who really loved her with all the ardency of a first passion, and who regarded her at the same time with no little veneration for those superior gifts of mind and education which, it was the general conviction in Charlemont, that she possessed, became, at length, discouraged in a pursuit which hitherto had found nothing but coldness and repulse.

To this extent, and in this subtile and ethereal way, the North had imposed upon it, unconsciously, a certain respect, amounting to veneration, for what may be called the sanctity of slavery, as it rests in and constitutes the aromal emanation from every Southern mind.

Rollo, a popular preacher, and zealous Covenanter, was her great favorite, and paid her, on his part, no less veneration.

Hungarian connexions, and from the snares of the banditti, as well as upon the spoils of the dead body, and his arrival at Paris, from whence there was such a short conveyance to England, whither he was attracted, by far other motives than that of filial veneration for his native soil.

She said, likewise, that the nun who taught her French had offered her fifty sequins for the ring on account of the likeness between her and the portrait of the saint, but not out of veneration for her patroness, whom she turned into ridicule as she read her life.

All the other Buddhist schools carried away on the Hegira had belonged to the Mahayana category, which focused on veneration of Buddhist statuary, meditation for salvation, saffron robes, and the other trappings that Grandam had described to me.

So they laded me againe, driving me before them with their naked swords, till they came to a noble City: where the principall Patrone bearing high reverence unto the goddesse, Came in great devotion before us with Tympany, Cymbals, and other instruments, and received her, and all our company with much sacrifice and veneration.

It took a long time for such attitudes to change, but already by the middle decades of the nineteenth century one can discern a new veneration of childhood on the part of those memoirists and writers who recalled their upbringing after 1812.

All these capable people are thus in the position of Wotan, forced to maintain as sacred, and themselves submit to, laws which they privately know to be obsolescent makeshifts, and to affect the deepest veneration for creeds and ideals which they ridicule among themselves with cynical scepticism.

From tribes of both continents and all stages of culture, the Muyscas of Columbia and the Natchez of Louisiana, the Quiches of Guatemala and the Caribs of the Orinoko, instance after instance might be marshalled to illustrate how universally a sacred character was attached to this number, and how uniformly it is traceable to a veneration of the cardinal points.

He was aware, however, that the apsarases, or dancing girls of the temples, were held in considerable veneration because of the ritualistic nature of their dances, which identified them closely with the religious life of the nation and rendered them, in a way, the particular wards of the gods.

Aztor stood back to admire his handiwork, once more turning to his audience with outspread arms and savouring their cheers and applause as they responded to his unspoken call for veneration.