Why was clemency trending last week?


[pruh-vin-shuh-liz-uh m] /prəˈvɪn ʃəˌlɪz əm/
narrowness of mind, ignorance, or the like, considered as resulting from lack of exposure to cultural or intellectual activity.
a trait, habit of thought, etc., characteristic of a provincial, a province, or the provinces.
a word, expression, or mode of pronunciation peculiar to a province.
devotion to one's own province before the nation as a whole.
Origin of provincialism
1760-70; provincial + -ism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for provincialism
  • But smug provincialism can be found in many quarters, even within science.
  • provincialism also has a modifying effect on fear in areas with many signs of disorganization.
  • It had a somewhat unfair reputation for being a cultural desert of provincialism and ignorance.
  • It is in vain to tell them that this dodging process is an inelegant provincialism.
British Dictionary definitions for provincialism


narrowness of mind or outlook; lack of sophistication
a word or attitude characteristic of a provincial
attention to the affairs of one's province rather than the whole nation
the state or quality of being provincial
Also localism
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for provincialism

1820 in the political sense, "local attachment as opposed to national unity," from provincial + -ism. Meaning "manners or modes of a certain province or of provinces generally" (as opposed to the big city or capital) is from 1836. Sense of "a local word or usage or expression" is from 1770.

PROVINCIALISM consists in:
(a) An ignorance of the manners, customs and nature of people living outside one's own village, parish, or nation.
(b) A desire to coerce others into uniformity.
[Ezra Pound, "Provincialism the Enemy," 1917]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for provincialism

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for provincialism

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with provincialism