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solemn + -ity, from Middle English solemnity (“observance of formality and ceremony”), frequently in the phrases in solemnity, with solemnity, which from Old French solemnite, from Latin sollemnitās, from sollemnis. (Compare solemn.)
- The quality of being deeply serious and sober or solemn.
- the solemnity of a funeral
- 1711 August 15 (Gregorian calendar), Joseph Addison; Richard Steele, “SATURDAY, August 4, 1711”, in The Spectator, number 158; republished in Alexander Chalmers, editor, The Spectator; a New Edition, […], volume II, New York, N.Y.: D[aniel] Appleton & Company, 1853, OCLC 191120697:
- The stateliness and gravity of the Spaniards shows itself in the solemnity of their language.
- 1754, Jonathan Edwards}, An Inquiry into the Modern Prevailing Notions Respecting that Freedom of the Will which is supposed to be Essential to Moral Agency
- These promises were often made with great solemnity and confirmed with an oath.
- An instance or example of solemn behavior; a rite or ceremony performed with reverence.
- c. 1699 – 1703, Alexander Pope, “The First Book of Statius His Thebais”, in The Works of Mr. Alexander Pope, volume I, London: […] W[illiam] Bowyer, for Bernard Lintot, […], published 1717, OCLC 43265629, page 337:
- Great was the cauſe; our old ſolemnities / From no blind zeal or fond tradition riſe, / But ſav'd from death, our Argives yearly pay / Theſe grateful honours to the God of Day.
- 1698 December 2 (Gregorian calendar), Francis Atterbury, “The Usefulness of Church Musick, a Sermon Preached on St. Cecilia’s Day, in 1698”, in Thomas Moore, editor, Sermons on Several Occasions. […], volume II, London: […] George James […]; and sold by C. Davis, […], published 1734, OCLC 953567982, pages 233–234:
- This is the Man after God's Heart, […] by endeavouring, when he aſſiſted at thoſe Solemnities, to perform them with the utmoſt Attention, Alacrity, and holy Warmth of Mind, of which he was capable.
- (Catholicism) A feast day of the highest rank celebrating a mystery of faith such as the Trinity, an event in the life of Jesus, the Virgin Mary, or another important saint.
- (law) A solemn or formal observance; proceeding according to due form; the formality which is necessary to render a thing done valid.
- (obsolete) A celebration or festivity.
quality of being solemn
instance of solemn behavior
feast day of the highest rank
- ^ “solemnity” in The New Oxford American Dictionary, Second Edition, Oxford University Press, 2005