Cer"e*mo*ny (?), n.; pl.
Ceremonies (#). [F.
cérémonie, L. caerimonia; perh. akin
to E. create and from a root signifying to do or
make.] 1. Ar act or series of acts,
often of a symbolical character, prescribed by law, custom, or
authority, in the conduct of important matters, as in the
performance of religious duties, the transaction of affairs of
state, and the celebration of notable events; as, the
ceremony of crowning a sovereign; the ceremonies
observed in consecrating a church; marriage and baptismal
According to all the rites of it, and according to
all the ceremonies thereof shall ye keep it [the
Numb. ix. 3
Bring her up the high altar, that she may
The sacred ceremonies there partake.
[The heralds] with awful ceremony
And trumpet's sound, throughout the host proclaim
A solemn council.
2. Behavior regulated by strict
etiquette; a formal method of performing acts of civility; forms
of civility prescribed by custom or authority.
Ceremony was but devised at first
To set a gloss on . . . hollow welcomes . . .
But where there is true friendship there needs none.
Al ceremonies are in themselves very silly
things; but yet a man of the world should know them.
3. A ceremonial symbols; an emblem, as a
crown, scepter, garland, etc. [Obs.]
Disrobe the images,
If you find them decked with ceremonies.
. . . Let no images
Be hung with Cæsar's trophies.
4. A sign or prodigy; a portent.
Cæsar, I never stood on
Yet, now they fright me.
Master of ceremonies, an officer who
determines the forms to be observed, or superintends their
observance, on a public occasion. -- Not to stand on
ceremony, not to be ceremonious; to be familiar,
outspoken, or bold.