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Definition of "pharisee" [phar•i•see]

  • A member of an ancient Jewish sect that emphasized strict interpretation and observance of the Mosaic law in both its oral and written form. (noun)
  • A hypocritically self-righteous person. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "pharisee" in a sentence
  • "Have you ever talk to your priest about it only to get called a pharisee for being such a stickler to liturgical norms?"
  • "#1.31 - Mon Oct 25, 2010 8:54 PM EDT keith O is the biggest "pharisee" in the media, a self righteous mask who judges people judging, a typical critic not quite unique as "false TV stages" portray him."
  • "Calling Nicodemus an "ανθρωπος εκ των φαρισαιων" (man from the pharisees), rather than just calling him a "pharisee" outright is another way of indicating that Nicodemus was different from most Pharisees."