American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A washing or cleansing of the body, especially as part of a religious rite.
- n. The liquid so used.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In a general sense, the act of washing; a cleansing or purification by water.
- n. Any ceremonial washing. Among the Oriental races, a washing of the person or of parts of it, as the hands and face, and among the Hebrews also of garments and vessels, as a religious duty on certain occasions, or in preparation for some religious act, as a sign of moral purification, and sometimes in token of innocence of, or absence of responsibility for, some particular crime or charge (whence the expression “to wash one's hands of anything”). The Mohammedan law requires ablution before each of the five daily prayers, and permits it to be performed with sand when water cannot be procured, as in the desert.
- n. In the Roman Catholic Church: The washing of the feet of the poor (John xiii. 14) on Maundy or Holy Thursday, called mandatum. The washing of the celebrant's hands before and after communion. In the Eastern Church, the purification of the newly baptized on the eighth day after baptism.
- n. In the Roman Catholic Church, the wine and water which after communion are separately poured into the chalice over the thumb and index-finger of the officiating priest, who drinks this ablution before going on with the closing prayers.
- n. In chem., the purification of bodies by the affusion of a proper liquor, as water to dissolve salts.
- n. In medicine, the washing of the body externally, as by baths, or internally, by diluent fluids.
- n. The water used in cleansing.
- n. The act of washing something.
- n. The ritual consumption by the deacon or priest of leftover sacred wine of host after the Communion.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. The act of washing or cleansing; specifically, the washing of the body, or some part of it, as a religious rite.
- n. The water used in cleansing.
- n. (R. C. Ch.) A small quantity of wine and water, which is used to wash the priest's thumb and index finger after the communion, and which then, as perhaps containing portions of the consecrated elements, is drunk by the priest.
- n. the ritual washing of a priest's hands or of sacred vessels
- Middle English ablucioun, from Latin ablūtiō, ablūtiōn-, from ablūtus, past participle of abluere, to wash away : ab-, away; see ab-1 + -luere, to wash; see leu(ə)- in Indo-European roots. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“When the minor ablution is ended, the worshipper should say, I testify that there is no god but the God, the One, which for partner hath none, and I testify that Mohammed is His servant and His apostle.”
“The act of ablution is sympathetic magic, based as it is on the "like produces like" principle, the principle that action on the signifier (physical dirt) is, or results in, parallel action on the signified (spiritual sin).”
“It was on that fatal spot that he conferred on his son the honor of knighthood: and the ceremony was accomplished by a slight blow from each of the horsemen of the guard, and by a ridiculous and inhuman ablution from a pool of water, which was yet polluted with patrician blood.”
“308 Complete ablution is rendered necessary chiefly by the emission of semen either in copulation or in nocturnal pollution.”
“Despite how it sounds, "ablution" is ceremonial washing, not a stomach-flattening exercise.”
“Although the process is going well, it is a matter of concern that some houses are not built according to the set building norms and standards of the Department of Housing, which stipulate that all houses should be built with facilities such as ablution and sinks inside," committee chairwoman Zoliswa Fredericks-Kota wrote in a statement.”
“The three Tibetan Buddhist lineages of the New Translation Period - Sakya, Kagyu, and Gelug - divide tantra into four classes: kriya (ritual Buddha-figure practice), which emphasizes external ritual practices such as ablution, diet, and fasting; charya (behavioral Buddha-figure practice), which equally emphasizes external behavior and internal methods; yoga (integrated Buddha-figure practice), which emphasizes internal methods of yoga; anuttarayoga (peerlessly integrated Buddha-figure practice), which teaches special, more advanced methods of internal practice.”
“Baptism is the initial sacrament of the New Testament, by which the covenant people of God are sprinkled with water, by a minister of the church, in the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost -- to signify and to testify the spiritual ablution which is effected by the blood and Spirit of Christ.”
“But if anything of the sort happen after the consecration, the insect should be caught carefully and washed thoroughly, then burned, and the "ablution," together with the ashes, thrown into the sacrarium.”
“Inside the hut was a being of epicene gender; at least, its dress rendered sex doubtful, inasmuch as the upper parts, which first met his gaze, were, a tattered man’s hat and shirt, both marvellously out of repair, and utterly unacquainted with any kind of ablution or other purification.”
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