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Alternative forms[edit]


  • IPA(key): /ˈsɪv.ɪ.laɪzd/
  • (file)
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  • Hyphenation: civ‧i‧lized


civilized (comparative more civilized, superlative most civilized)

  1. Having a highly developed society or culture; belonging to civilization.
    • 1981, William Irwin Thompson, The Time Falling Bodies Take to Light: Mythology, Sexuality and the Origins of Culture, London: Rider/Hutchinson & Co., page 196:
      Like the wolf, man the hunter in killing the weak and unfit, actually works to maintain the health of the herd. But civilized man is quite a different animal, and when he wipes out an entire city or levels a forest, he is no longer working within the natural balance of things.
  2. Showing evidence of moral and intellectual advancement; humane, reasonable, ethical.
  3. Marked by refinement in taste and manners.
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, chapter 5, in The China Governess[1]:
      A waiter brought his aperitif, which was a small scotch and soda, and as he sipped it gratefully he sighed.
         ‘Civilized,’ he said to Mr. Campion. ‘Humanizing.’ […] ‘Cigars and summer days and women in big hats with swansdown face-powder, that's what it reminds me of.’

Derived terms[edit]


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  1. simple past tense and past participle of civilize

See also[edit]