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[dahy-dak-tik] /daɪˈdæk tɪk/
intended for instruction; instructive:
didactic poetry.
inclined to teach or lecture others too much:
a boring, didactic speaker.
teaching or intending to teach a moral lesson.
didactics, (used with a singular verb) the art or science of teaching.
Also, didactical.
1635-45; < Greek didaktikós apt at teaching, instructive, equivalent to didakt(ós) that may be taught + -ikos -ic
Related forms
didactically, adverb
didacticism, noun
nondidactic, adjective
nondidactically, adverb
undidactic, adjective
2. pedantic, preachy, donnish, pedagogic. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for didacticism
  • It has moments of lyrical beauty but is weighed down by academic didacticism.
  • The satire to which he is subjected nonetheless has an air of scolding didacticism.
  • Their lapse into youthful sincerity and didacticism is no improvement.
  • Here is a drama that holds down the heroics, polemics and didacticism to which works about heroes and heroines are prone.
  • But the fantasy never gets off the ground, and the didacticism is never clearly enough directed.
British Dictionary definitions for didacticism


intended to instruct, esp excessively
morally instructive; improving
(of works of art or literature) containing a political or moral message to which aesthetic considerations are subordinated
Derived Forms
didactically, adverb
didacticism, noun
Word Origin
C17: from Greek didaktikos skilled in teaching, from didaskein to teach
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for didacticism



1650s, from French didactique, from Greek didaktikos "apt at teaching," from didaktos "taught," past participle of didaskein "teach," from PIE root *dens- "wisdom, to teach, learn." Related: Didactically; didacticism.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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didacticism in Medicine

didactic di·dac·tic (dī-dāk'tĭk)
Of or relating to medical teaching by lectures or textbooks as distinguished from clinical demonstration with patients.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Encyclopedia Article for didacticism


of literature or other art, intended to convey instruction and information. The word is often used to refer to texts that are overburdened with instructive or factual matter to the exclusion of graceful and pleasing detail so that they are pompously dull and erudite. Some literature, however, is both entertaining and consciously didactic, as, for example, proverbs and gnomic poetry. The word is from the Greek didaktikos, "apt at teaching."

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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