A*nath"e*ma (#), n.; pl. Anathemas (#). [L. anathma, fr. Gr. anything devoted, esp. to evil, a curse; also L. anathma, fr. Gr. a votive offering; all fr. to set up as a votive gift, dedicate; up + to set. See Thesis.]


A ban or curse pronounced with religious solemnity by ecclesiastical authority, and accompanied by excommunication. Hence: Denunciation of anything as accursed.

[They] denounce anathemas against unbelievers. Priestley.


An imprecation; a curse; a malediction.

Finally she fled to London followed by the anathemas of both [families]. Thackeray.


Any person or thing anathematized, or cursed by ecclesiastical authority.

The Jewish nation were an anathema destined to destruction. St. Paul . . . says he could wish, to save them from it, to become an anathema, and be destroyed himself. Locke.

Anathema Maranatha (#) (see 1 Cor. xvi. 22), an expression commonly considered as a highly intensified form of anathema. Maran atha is now considered as a separate sentence, meaning, "Our Lord cometh."

© Webster 1913.