- The definition of profane is something that is obscene or contrary to religious teachings.
An example of profane is pornography.
- To profane is to treat someone or something disrespectfully, especially someone or something sacred.
An example of profane is when you insult the Pope.
profane definition by Webster's New World
- not connected with religion or religious matters; secular: profane art
- not initiated into the inner mysteries or esoteric knowledge of something
- not hallowed or consecrated
- showing disrespect or contempt for sacred things; irreverent
Origin: Late Middle English prophane ; from Middle French ; from Classical Latin profanus ; from pro-, before plush fanum, temple; literally , outside of the temple, hence not sacred, common: see pro- and amp; fane
profane definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- Marked by contempt or irreverence for what is sacred.
- Nonreligious in subject matter, form, or use; secular: sacred and profane music.
- Not admitted into a body of secret knowledge or ritual; uninitiated.
- Vulgar; coarse.
- To treat with irreverence: profane the name of God.
- To put to an improper, unworthy, or degrading use; abuse.
Origin: Middle English prophane, from Old French, from Latin profānus, from prō fānō, in front of the temple : prō-, before, outside; see pro-1 + fānō, ablative of fānum, temple; see dhēs- in Indo-European roots.
- pro·fanˈa·toˌry adjective
- pro·faneˈly adverb
- pro·fanˈer noun