Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Of, relating to, or characteristic of the Pharisees.
  • adj. Hypocritically self-righteous and condemnatory.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of or pertaining to the Pharisees.
  • adj. Emphasizing the observance of ritual or practice over the meaning.
  • adj. Self-righteous.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to the Pharisees; resembling the Pharisees.
  • adj. Addicted to external forms and ceremonies; making a show of religion without the spirit of it; ceremonial; formal; hypocritical; self-righteous.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Of or pertaining to the Pharisees; addicted, like the Pharisees, to observance of the external forms and ceremonies of religion without regard to its spirit or essence; hence, formal; hypocritical.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. excessively or hypocritically pious

Etymologies

Pharisee +‎ -ic (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Instead of obsessing over biblical tradition and ritualistic purity, he identified radical ethical ideals, he invited everyone to join his social cause, and he condemned pharisaic self-righteousness.

    John Shook, Ph.D.: Secularists Celebrate Dr. King Too

  • The Son of Anak, otherwise Rufus the Blue-Eyed, and also plebeianly known as Tots, rioted with him from brier-rose path to farthest orchard, scalped him in the haymow with barbaric yells, and once, with pharisaic zeal, was near to crucifying him under the attic roof beams.

    Local Color

  • They consider Nepal as a transit hub of ethno-pharisaic terrorist and regressive elements who want their disintegration, and has nabbed the peace and prosperity of their nations.

    Nepal's Special Security Plan: Political Stunt?

  • In preparation for such pharisaic claims, I compared the list of 64 Democrats with the roll call for HJ Res 114, the bill that authorized the United States Armed Forces to invade Iraq.

    Allison Kilkenny: House Representatives Vote No on Women's Rights, Yes on War

  • One comes to expect pharisaic phrases from the Anglican hierarchy, but none can set the teeth on edge quite as effectively as “gracious restraint”.

    Words that have become repulsive: Gracious Restraint « Anglican Samizdat

  • We know how much Our Divine Savior detested this empty pharisaic show, He Who wished that all should adore the Father "in spirit and in truth."

    Archive 2009-05-01

  • He is inept because he said “Bring em on”, deserted the war on terrorism in order to pursue oil interests, let 9/11 happen, destroyed 8 years of economic progress, made the United States the pharisaic of the world, lost the war in Iraq and moved jobs overseas in order to enrich his campaign donors.

    Think Progress » BREAKING: North Korea Test Launches Missiles

  • Hebrew prophets, especially in that puritanical and pharisaic narrowness which, with characteristic simplicity, can see no good outside its own petty pale.

    The Book of The Thousand Nights And A Night

  • Right wing authoritarianism, classism and wedded pharisaic "Christianity" have become a national religion and staple of our "red states" whose primitive authoritarian social structure lends itself to serving neo-cons as a re-election machine and the staunch whitewashers of the social Darwinist ‘robber-baron’ mentality.

    Neo-cons as Heirs of Social Darwinism

  • It's a pharisaic fig-leaf for some really quite nasty queer-bashing.

    It's About That Old Fashioned Thing Called Shame

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