1. Action; process; practice: terrorism.
2. Characteristic behavior or quality: heroism.
a. State; condition; quality: pauperism.
b. State or condition resulting from an excess of something specified: strychninism.
4. Distinctive or characteristic trait: Latinism.
a. Doctrine; theory; system of principles: pacifism.
b. An attitude of prejudice against a given group: racism.
[Middle English -isme, from Old French, from Latin -ismus, from Greek -ismos, n. suff.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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