Dictionary: SA-CRA'RI-UM – SA'CRIST

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A sort of family chapel in the houses of the Romans, devoted to some particular divinity. – Elmes.

SA'CRE, [see SAKER.]

SA'CRED, a. [Fr. sacré; Sp. It. and Port. sacro; from L. sacer, sacred, holy, cursed, damnable; W. segyr, that keeps apart, from sêg, that is without access; segru, to secrete, to separate. We here see the connection between sacredness and secrecy. The sense is, removed or separated from that which is common, vulgar, polluted, or open, public; and accursed is, separated from society or the privileges of citizens, rejected, banished.]

  1. Holy; pertaining to God or to his worship; separated from common secular uses and consecrated to God and his service; as, a sacred place; a sacred day; a sacred feast; sacred service; sacred orders.
  2. Proceeding from God and containing religious precepts; as, the sacred books of the Old and New Testament.
  3. Narrating or writing facts respecting God and holy things; as, a sacred historian.
  4. Relating to religion or the worship of God; used for religious purposes; as, sacred songs; sacred music; sacred history.
  5. Consecrated; dedicated; devoted; with to. A temple sacred to the queen of love. – Dryden.
  6. Entitled to reverence; venerable. Poet and saint, to thee alone were given, / The two most sacred names of earth and heaven. – Cowley.
  7. Inviolable, as if appropriated to a superior being; as, sacred honor or promise. Secrets of marriage still are sacred held. – Dryden. Sacred majesty. In this title, sacred has no definite meaning, or it is blasphemy. Sacred place, in the civil law, is that where a deceased person is buried.

SA'CRED-LY, adv.

  1. Religiously; with due reverence as of something holy or consecrated to God; as, to observe the sabbath sacredly; the day is sacredly kept.
  2. Inviolably; strictly; as, to observe one's word sacredly; a secret to be sacredly kept.


  1. The state of being sacred, or consecrated to God, to his worship or to religious uses; holiness; sanctity; as, the sacredness of the sanctuary or its worship; the sacredness of the sabbath; the sacredness of the clerical office.
  2. Inviolableness; as, the sacredness of marriage vows or of a trust.

SA-CRIF'IC, or SA-CRIF'IC-AL, a. [L. sacrificus. See Sacrifice.]

Employed in sacrifice. – Johnson.


Capable of being offered in sacrifice. [Ill formed, harsh and not used.] – Brown.

SA-CRIF'IC-ANT, n. [L. sacrificans.]

One that offers a sacrifice. – Hallywell.

SAC-RIF-IC-A'TOR, n. [Fr. sacrificateur.]

A sacrificer; one that offers a sacrifice. [Not used.] Brown.


Offering sacrifice. – Sherwood.

SAC'RI-FICE, n. [Fr. from L. sacrificium.]

  1. An offering made to God by killing and burning some animal upon an altar, as an acknowledgment of his power and providence, or to make atonement for sin, appease his wrath or conciliate his favor, or to express thankfulness for his benefits. Sacrifices have been common to most nations, and have been offered to false gods, as well as by the Israelites to Jehovah. A sacrifice differs from an oblation; the latter being an offering of a thing entire or without change, as tithes or first fruits; whereas sacrifice implies a destruction or killing, as of a beast. Sacrifices are expiatory, impetratory, and eucharistical; that is, atoning for sin, seeking favor, or expressing thanks. Human sacrifices, the killing and offering of human beings to deities, have been practiced by some barbarous nations.
  2. The thing offered to God, or immolated by an act of religion. My life if thou preserv'st, my life / Thy sacrifice shall be. – Addison.
  3. Destruction, surrender or loss made or incurred for gaining some object, or for obliging another; as, the sacrifice of interest to pleasure, or of pleasure to interest.
  4. Any thing destroyed.


To make offerings to God by the slaughter and burning of victims, or of some part of them. – Exod. iii.

SAC'RI-FICE, v.t. [sac'rifize; L. sacrifico; Fr. sacrificer; Sp. sacrificar; It. sacrificare; L. sacer, sacred, and facio, to make.]

  1. To offer to God in homage or worship, by killing and consuming, as victims on an altar; to immolate, either as an atonement for sin, or to procure favor, or to express thankfulness; as, to sacrifice an ox or a lamb. 2 Sam. vi.
  2. To destroy, surrender or suffer to be lost for the sake of obtaining something; as, to sacrifice the peace of the church to a little vain curiosity. We should never sacrifice health to pleasure, nor integrity to fame.
  3. To devote with loss. Condemn'd to sacrifice his childish years / To babbling ignorance and to empty fears. – Prior.
  4. To destroy; to kill.


Offered to God upon an altar; destroyed, surrendered, or suffered to be lost; destroying.


One that sacrifices or immolates. Dryden.


Performing sacrifice; included in sacrifice; consisting in sacrifice. – Shak. Taylor.


Offering to God upon an altar; surrendering, or suffering to be lost; destroying.

SAC'RI-LEGE, n. [Fr. from L. sacrilegium; sacer, sacred, and lego, to take or steal.]

The crime of violating or profaning sacred things; or the alienating to laymen or to common purposes what has been appropriated or consecrated to religious persons or uses. And the hid treasures in her sacred tomb / With sacrilege to dig. – Spenser.

SAC-RI-LE'GIOUS, a. [L. sacrilegus.]

  1. Violating sacred things; polluted with the crime of sacrilege. Above the reach of sacrilegious hands. – Pope.
  2. Containing sacrilege; as, a sacrilegious attempt or act.


With sacrilege; in violation of sacred things; as, sacrilegiously invading the property of a church.


  1. The quality of being sacrilegious.
  2. Disposition to sacrilege. – Scott.


One who is guilty of sacrilege. – Spelman.

SA'CRING, ppr. [from Fr. sacrer.]

Consecrating. [Not in use.] Temple. Shak.


A bell rung before the host. – Dict.


A sacristan; a person retained in a cathedral to copy out music for the choir, and take care of the books. Busby.