from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A restrictive diet (of bread and water, for example) as a punishment or religious form of discipline.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. Among the primitive Christians, the living on a diet of dry food in Lent and on other fasts.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The habit of living on dry food, especially a form of abstinence, as in the early church, in which only bread, herbs, salt, and water were consumed.
From Ancient Greek ξηροφαγία. Compare xero-, -phagy. (Wiktionary)