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Borrowed from French théodicée, from Ancient Greek θεός (theós, god) + δίκη (díkē, justice). Coined by Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz in his 1710 work Théodicée, also known as “Essays of Theodicy on the Goodness of God, the Freedom of Man and the Origin of Evil”.



theodicy (plural theodicies)

  1. A justification of a deity, or the attributes of a deity, especially in regard to the existence of evil and suffering in the world; a work or discourse justifying the ways of God.
    • 2003, Roy Porter, Flesh in the Age of Reason, Penguin 2004, page 388:
      God was now nothing more than a distant cause of causes; what mattered was matter, and man acting in nature. The theodicy, the master-narrative, had become secularized.

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