Nihilism Definition

nīə-lĭzəm, nē-
The denial of the existence of any basis for knowledge or truth.
Webster's New World
The general rejection of customary beliefs in morality, religion, etc.
Webster's New World
The belief that there is no meaning or purpose in existence.
Webster's New World
Political belief or action that advocates or commits violence or terrorism without discernible constructive goals.
American Heritage
The doctrine that existing social, political, and economic institutions must be completely destroyed in order to make way for new institutions.
Webster's New World

Origin of Nihilism

  • From German Nihilismus, itself from Latin nihil (“nil, nothing") + German -ismus '-ism', coined in 1817 by German philosopher Friedrich Heinrich Jacobi, but repeatedly 'reinvented'.

    From Wiktionary

  • Latin nihil nothing ne in Indo-European roots –ism

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

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