Definition for FOR-MAL'I-TY


  1. The practice or observance of forms. Formalities of extraordinary zeal and piety are never more studied and elaborate than in desperate desigus. K. Charles.
  2. Ceremony; mere conformity to customary modes. Nor was his attendance on divine offices a matter of formality and custom, but of conscience. Atterbury.
  3. Established order; rule of proceeding; mode; method; as, the formalities of judicial process; formalities of law.
  4. Order; decorum to be observed; customary mode of behavior. L'Estrange.
  5. Customary mode of dress; habit; robe. Swift.
  6. External appearance. Glanville.
  7. Essence; the quality which constitutes a thing what it is. The formality of the vow lies in the promise made to God. Stillingfleet.
  8. In the schools, the manner in which a thing is conceived; or a manner in an object, importing a relation to the understanding, by which it may be distinguished from another object. Thus animality and rationality are formalities. Encyc.

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