Adjective "sanctimonious" definition and examples



Definitions and examples


Making a show of being morally superior to other people.
  1. 'But we don't need the sanctimonious scolding of a student newspaper editor to tell us voting for a party, any party, is a manifestation of our stupidity and ignorance.'
  2. 'Lest I be further accused of being sanctimonious or self-righteous, I confess I am no model of student participation.'
  3. 'Even jogging, while seemingly harmless, has encouraged damp, smelly and sanctimonious people to stride down our streets with grinning notions of moral superiority.'
  4. 'If it is, then his comeback should be welcomed, because he does have an opportunity to do something positive, even against the inevitable background of sanctimonious and hypocritical noise.'
  5. 'The most common line of attack from these sanctimonious scribes is that the Catholic Church is not a democracy and that so-called a la carte Catholics should get out of the church.'
  6. 'She did not question the fact that the film was intended to portray a truth about sanctimonious priests posing as the saviours of a religious heritage.'
  7. 'The themes of the film are worn on its striped, embroidered sleeve, and often the script gets preachy with its sanctimonious moralizing.'
  8. 'Many of us have tired of his sanctimonious, smug condescension.'
  9. 'Fairytales were always a bit of a swindle, bribing us with happy endings to accept their sanctimonious morality.'
  10. 'The priests and priestesses are pious, sanctimonious bastards.'


1. making a hypocritical show of religious devotion, piety, righteousness, etc.: They resented his sanctimonious comments on immorality in America.

2. Obsolete. holy; sacred.

More examples(as adjective)

"people can be sanctimonious."

"voices can be sanctimonious."

"tones can be sanctimonious."

"talks can be sanctimonious."

"twaddles can be sanctimonious."

More examples++


Early 17th century (in the sense ‘holy in character’): from Latin sanctimonia ‘sanctity’ (from sanctus ‘holy’) + -ous.