[lat-i-tood-n-air-ee-uhn, -tyood-]
allowing or characterized by latitude in opinion or conduct, especially in religious views.
a person who is latitudinarian in opinion or conduct.
Anglican Church. one of the churchmen in the 17th century who maintained the wisdom of the episcopal form of government and ritual but denied its divine origin and authority.

1655–65; < Latin lātitūdin- (see latitudinal) + -arian

latitudinarianism, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
latitudinarian (ˌlætɪˌtjuːdɪˈnɛərɪən)
1.  permitting or marked by freedom of attitude or behaviour, esp in religious matters
2.  (sometimes capital) of or relating to a school of thought within the Church of England in the 17th century that minimized the importance of divine authority in matters of doctrine and stressed the importance of reason and personal judgment
3.  a person with latitudinarian views
[C17: from Latin lātitūdō breadth, latitude, influenced in form by Trinitarian]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

1660s, "characterized by broad-mindedness," especially in reference to Episcopal clergymen indifferent to doctrinal details; from latitude in its meaning "freedom from narrow restrictions" (c.1600).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica


any of the 17th-century Anglican clerics whose beliefs and practices were viewed by conservatives as unorthodox or, at best, heterodox. After first being applied to the Cambridge Platonists, the term was later used to categorize churchmen who depended upon reason to establish the moral certainty of Christian doctrines rather than argument from tradition. Limiting that doctrine to what had to be accepted, they allowed for latitude on other teachings. The Latitudinarians thus became the precursors of the similar Broad Church (q.v.) movement in the 19th-century Church of England.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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