Part of speech: noun
Origin: Latin, early 17th century
The amalgamation or attempted amalgamation of different religions, cultures, or schools of thought.
(Linguistics) The merging of different inflectional varieties of a word during the development of a language.
Examples of Syncretism in a sentence
"The food festival was the perfect opportunity for syncretism of Martha’s Jamaican and French heritages."
"The lexicographer’s paper explored the syncretism of the English language in different countries."
Popularity Over Time
This word found prominence in Latin, but syncretism originally has Greek roots. It is thought that this word developed from the Greek word “sunkrētismos” and “sunkrētizein” (which both mean “to unite against a third-party”), which has the root words “sun” (together) and “krēs” (a word thought to reference the ancient Cretan community).
Did you Know?
If you’ve ever enjoyed a sushi burrito or fantasized about a particularly delicious banh mi, you already have familiarity with syncretism in the culinary world. Fusion foods involve combining flavors and ingredients from different cultures into one dish. Banh mi, for example, are delicious Vietnamese sandwiches created using French baguettes and traditional Vietnamese ingredients.