Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


Not to be tedious, they had many other beliefs of a similar kind.

Haven't other people as good a right to live their beliefs as you?

She was so loyal, so courageous in her beliefs, such a great little sportswoman.

But doubtless he had this time touched her beliefs to the quick.

"My beliefs can matter nothing," he compromised, and made her a valedictory bow.

Facts or no facts, you'd rather have your beliefs, wouldn't you?

Such Americans were, in the inevitable struggle, truly martyrs to their beliefs.

The positiveness of their beliefs was a special source of wonder to him.

His son buried the silenced destroyer of systems, of hopes, of beliefs.

The beliefs which we have sketched are the materials out of which they also arose.


late 12c., bileave, replacing Old English geleafa "belief, faith," from West Germanic *ga-laubon "to hold dear, esteem, trust" (cf. Old Saxon gilobo, Middle Dutch gelove, Old High German giloubo, German Glaube), from *galaub- "dear, esteemed," from intensive prefix *ga- + *leubh- "to care, desire, like, love" (see love (v.)). The prefix was altered on analogy of the verb believe. The distinction of the final consonant from that of believe developed 15c.

Belief used to mean "trust in God," while faith meant "loyalty to a person based on promise or duty" (a sense preserved in keep one's faith, in good (or bad) faith and in common usage of faithful, faithless, which contain no notion of divinity). But faith, as cognate of Latin fides, took on the religious sense beginning in 14c. translations, and belief had by 16c. become limited to "mental acceptance of something as true," from the religious use in the sense of "things held to be true as a matter of religious doctrine" (a sense attested from early 13c.).


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.