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or (especially British) moralise

[mawr-uh-lahyz, mor-] /ˈmɔr əˌlaɪz, ˈmɒr-/
verb (used without object), moralized, moralizing.
to reflect on or express opinions about something in terms of right and wrong, especially in a self-righteous or tiresome way.
verb (used with object), moralized, moralizing.
to explain in a moral sense, or draw a moral from.
to improve the morals of.
Origin of moralize
1350-1400; Middle English moralisen < Medieval Latin mōrālizāre. See moral, -ize
Related forms
moralization, noun
moralizer, noun
moralizingly, adverb
overmoralize, verb, overmoralized, overmoralizing.
overmoralizingly, adverb
unmoralizing, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for moralizing
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • This piece of moralizing is evidently occasioned by some tricks in trade indulged in by Jewish merchants.

  • She was not moralizing; at least it was unlike any moralizing that they had ever heard.

    Ester Ried Yet Speaking Isabella Alden
  • Carl, however, was not listening to Mrs. Harling's moralizing.

    Carl and the Cotton Gin Sara Ware Bassett
  • Wordsworth's "Kitten and the Falling Leaves," is in the high, moralizing style.

    Concerning Cats Helen M. Winslow
  • She is too ready to moralize, and her moralizing degenerates unfortunately often into commonplace platitudes.

    Mary Wollstonecraft Elizabeth Robins Pennell
  • And with this profound bit of moralizing, he sipped his glass in revery.

    Roland Cashel Charles James Lever
British Dictionary definitions for moralizing


(intransitive) to make moral pronouncements
(transitive) to interpret or explain in a moral sense
(transitive) to improve the morals of
Derived Forms
moralization, moralisation, noun
moralizer, moraliser, noun
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 moralizing



c.1400, "expound or interpret spiritual or moral significance," from Old French moraliser and directly from Late Latin moralizare, from moralis (see moral (adj.)). Related: Moralized; moralizing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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