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austerity

[aw-ster-i-tee] /ɔˈstɛr ɪ ti/
noun, plural austerities.
1.
austere quality; severity of manner, life, etc.; sternness.
2.
Usually, austerities. ascetic practices:
austerities of monastery life.
3.
strict economy.
Origin
1300-1350
1300-50; Middle English austerite < Anglo-French, Old French austerite < Latin austēritās. See austere, -ity
Synonyms
1. harshness, strictness, asceticism, rigor. 2. See hardship.
Antonyms
1. leniency.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for austerities
  • The austerities which he practised are rather to be admired than imitated.
  • He would abate nothing of his usual austerities, without an absolute necessity.
  • Whatever austerities he prescribed to others he was the first to practise himself remitting nothing of them even in his old age.
  • The penitential austerities which she practised, were such as seemed rather to suit a recluse than one who lived in a court.
  • austerities had indeed been trimmed down as the centuries advanced.
  • These austerities impaired his health, and he was compelled to return to the city.
British Dictionary definitions for austerities

austerity

/ɒˈstɛrɪtɪ/
noun (pl) -ties
1.
the state or quality of being austere
2.
(often pl) an austere habit, practice, or act
3.
  1. reduced availability of luxuries and consumer goods, esp when brought about by government policy
  2. (as modifier): an austerity budget
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for austerities

austerity

n.

mid-14c., "sternness, harshness," from Old French austerite "harshness, cruelty" (14c.) and directly from Late Latin austeritatem (nominative austeritas), from austerus (see austere). Of severe self-discipline, from 1580s; hence "severe simplicity" (1875); applied during World War II to national policies limiting non-essentials as a wartime economy.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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