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[dok-truh-nl; British also dok-trahyn-l] /ˈdɒk trə nl; British also dɒkˈtraɪn l/
of, relating to, or concerned with doctrine:
a doctrinal dispute.
Origin of doctrinal
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Late Latin doctrīnālis, equivalent to Latin doctrīn(a) (see doctrine) + -ālis -al1
Related forms
doctrinality, noun
doctrinally, adverb
nondoctrinal, adjective
nondoctrinally, adverb
undoctrinal, adjective
undoctrinally, adverb
Can be confused
doctrinal, doctrinaire. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for doctrinally
Historical Examples
  • doctrinally, Buddhism seems to be less a religion than a system of philosophy.

    The Religions of Japan William Elliot Griffis
  • doctrinally, the modern Ritualist is prepared to surrender the old theory of inspiration.

    Outspoken Essays William Ralph Inge
  • Socially it rescued her from the priest to make her the chattel of the husband, and doctrinally it expunged her altogether.

    Woman, Church & State Matilda Joslyn Gage
  • The tories were sympathetic to the doctrine of divine right and favored a doctrinally high church.

  • Here too those who deny the freedom of man's will doctrinally yet accept it as a working fact.

    The Discipline of War John Hasloch Potter
  • Men may be doctrinally depraved; they are much more depraved practically.

  • Pan-Islamic nationalism is a relatively recent phenomenon and has not been doctrinally worked out.

    The New World of Islam Lothrop Stoddard
  • doctrinally he states it adequately and holds it unhesitatingly.

  • doctrinally, of course, it is his duty to pray for the boat to sink and exterminate this crowd.

    The Ship Dwellers Albert Bigelow Paine
Word Origin and History for doctrinally



"pertaining to doctrines," 1560s, from Late Latin doctrinalis, from doctrina (see doctrine). Attested from mid-15c. as the title of a text book (from Middle French doctrinal).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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