From Middle English faith, fayth, feith, feyth (also fay, fey, fei ("faith"); > English fay (“faith”)), from Old French fay, fey, fei, feit, feid (“faith”), from Latin fidēs (faith, belief, trust; whence also English fidelity), from fīdō (“trust, confide in”), ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *bʰidʰ-, zero-grade of *bʰeydʰ- ("to command, persuade, trust"; whence also English bide).
Old French had [θ] as a final devoiced allophone of /ð/ from lenited Latin /d/; this eventually fell silent in the 12th century. The -th of the Middle English forms is most straightforwardly accounted for as a direct borrowing of a French [θ]. However, it has also been seen as arising from alteration of a French form with -d under influence of English abstract nouns in the suffix -th (e.g. truth, ruth, health, etc.), or as a recharacterisation of a French form like fay, fey, fei with the same suffix, thus making the word equivalent to fay + -th.
- The process of forming or understanding abstractions, ideas, or beliefs, without empirical evidence, experience or observation.
I have faith that my prayers will be answered.
I have faith in the healing power of crystals.
- A religious belief system.
The Christian faith.
- An obligation of loyalty or fidelity and the observance of such an obligation.
He acted in good faith to restore broken diplomatic ties after defeating the incumbent.
- A trust or confidence in the intentions or abilities of a person, object, or ideal.
I have faith in the goodness of my fellow man.
- (obsolete) Credibility or truth.
- the faith of the foregoing narrative
For quotations of use of this term, see Citations:faith.
- (knowing, without direct observation, based on indirect evidence and experience, that something is true, real, or will happen): belief, confidence, trust, conviction
- (system of religious belief): religion
- (religious belief system): Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Wicca, Eckankar, Raëlism, Zoroastrianism, New Age, Unitarian Universalism, Jainism, Shinto, LaVeyan Satanism, Scientology, Taoism, Yoruba, Druidry, paganism, Juche, Cao Dai, Confucianism, Spiritism, humanism, Rastafarianism, Tenrikyo
- faith in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913
- faith in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911