English Dictionary

Pioneers in dictionary publishing since 1819

Pharisee (ˈfærɪˌsiː



  1. (Judaism) a member of an ancient Jewish sect that was opposed to the Sadducees, teaching strict observance of Jewish tradition as interpreted rabbinically and believing in life after death and in the coming of the Messiah
  2. (often not capital) a self-righteous or hypocritical person

Word Origin

Old English Farīsēus, ultimately from Aramaic perīshāiyā, pl of perīsh separated


View thesaurus entry
= hypocrite, fraud, canter, humbug, dissembler, pietist, whited sepulchre, dissimulator, phoney or phony (informal)


Log in to comment on this word.