Meaning of latitudinarian in English:


Pronunciation /ˌlatɪtjuːdɪˈnɛːrɪən/


  • Allowing latitude in religion; showing no preference among varying creeds and forms of worship.

    ‘the latitudinarian clergy of the established Church’
    • ‘Like their English counterparts, American latitudinarian Anglicans, such as Alexander Garden, also shaped Enlightened Dissent.’
    • ‘In specifying severe judgment, as is widely recommended, are the bishops engaged in a form of retribution for having erred in the past by latitudinarian excess?’
    • ‘New Hampshire, first settled by New England Congregationalists and by more latitudinarian Anglican colonists, was chartered in 1679.’
    • ‘But the swelling tide of latitudinarian theology and sentiment made it seem innocuous enough to most.’
    • ‘Scholars describe the Leverett curriculum as ‘catholick,’ meaning that the tutors adopted a latitudinarian stance on many doctrinal issues.’
    tolerant, unprejudiced, unbigoted, broad-minded, open-minded, enlightened, forbearing


  • A person with a latitudinarian attitude.

    ‘Wishy-washy latitudinarians that we are, the editors emphasize that each group is independent and works out whatever works best for participants.’
    • ‘It is a commonplace to associate the low view of the episcopate not only with latitudinarians, but also with nineteenth-century evangelicals.’
    • ‘However, the writings of latitudinarians Tillotson, Stillingfleet, and Wilkins received the most accolades.’
    • ‘Nor did he appeal at all to live-and-let-live latitudinarians.’
    • ‘His ecumenical disposition tends toward the latitudinarian, although he has clarified that he does think there may still be church-dividing differences between Catholics and Lutherans.’
    • ‘His reputation was as a conciliator and latitudinarian, anxious not to oppress the dissenters.’


Mid 17th century from Latin latitudo ‘breadth’ (see latitude) + -arian. The term was first applied in a derogatory sense to more liberal and tolerant Anglican clerics.