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[in-fi-dl, -del] /ˈɪn fɪ dl, -ˌdɛl/
  1. a person who does not accept a particular faith, especially Christianity.
  2. (in Christian use) an unbeliever, especially a Muslim.
  3. (in Muslim use) a person who does not accept the Islamic faith; kaffir.
a person who has no religious faith; unbeliever.
(loosely) a person who disbelieves or doubts a particular theory, belief, creed, etc.; skeptic.
not accepting a particular faith, especially Christianity or Islam; heathen.
without religious faith.
due to or manifesting unbelief:
infidel ideas.
rejecting the Christian religion while accepting no other; not believing in the Bible or any Christian divine revelation.
Also, infidelic
[in-fi-del-ik] /ˌɪn fɪˈdɛl ɪk/ (Show IPA)
. of, relating to, or characteristic of unbelievers or infidels.
Origin of infidel
late Middle English
1425-75; late Middle English < Late Latin infidēlis unbelieving, Latin: unfaithful, treacherous. See in-3, feal
1–3. See atheist. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for infidel
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • As though any great poet who had come to years of discretion could be a materialist or an infidel.

  • Already a Christian, could she hope for the success of the infidel?

    Leila, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • "Go, notwithstanding," said Juan, touched still further by the distresses of the infidel.

    The Infidel, Vol. II. Robert Montgomery Bird
  • She must have been a bad one like her brother, who was an infidel, they say, and did not know or fear God.

    The Book of Khalid Ameen Rihani
  • The man who will not provide for his own house, as one of old has said, is worse than an infidel.

    Gospel Doctrine Joseph F. Smith
British Dictionary definitions for infidel


a person who has no religious belief; unbeliever
rejecting a specific religion, esp Christianity or Islam
of, characteristic of, or relating to unbelievers or unbelief
Word Origin
C15: from Medieval Latin infidēlis, from Latin (adj): unfaithful, from in-1 + fidēlis faithful; see feal
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 infidel

mid-15c. (adjective and noun), from Middle French infidèle, from Latin infidelis "unfaithful, not to be trusted," later "unbelieving," from in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + fidelis "faithful" (see fidelity). In 15c. "a non-Christian" (especially a Saracen); later "one who does not believe in religion" (1520s). Also used to translate Arabic qafir, which is from a root meaning "to disbelieve, to deny," strictly referring to all non-Muslims but virtually synonymous with "Christian;" hence, from a Muslim or Jewish point of view, "a Christian" (1530s; see kaffir).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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