1) ADJ-GRADED Someone who is pious is very religious and moral.

He was brought up by pious female relatives.

...pious acts of charity.

Derived words:
piously ADV-GRADED ADV with v

Conti kneeled and crossed himself piously.

2) ADJ-GRADED: ADJ n (disapproval) If you describe someone's words as pious, you think that their words are full of good intentions but do not lead to anything useful being done.

What we need is not manifestos of pious intentions, but real action.

Derived words:
piously ADV-GRADED ADV with v

The groups at the conference spoke piously of their fondness for democracy.

3) ADJ-GRADED (disapproval) If you describe someone as pious, you disapprove of the fact that they pretend to be very religious without being sincere.

His attitude is compassionate without being pious.

...an expression of pious innocence.

Derived words:
piously ADV-GRADED ADV with v

`Life,' said Dr Holly piously, `is the only wealth, and I gave you life.'

English dictionary. 2008.

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  • Pious — Pi ous, a. [L. pius: cf. F. pieux.] 1. Of or pertaining to piety; exhibiting piety; reverential; dutiful; religious; devout; godly. Pious hearts. Milton. Pious poetry. Johnson. [1913 Webster] Where was the martial brother s pious care? Pope.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pious — [pī′əs] adj. [L pius, pious, devout, affectionate, good, prob. < IE * pwīyos < base * peu , to clean > L purus,PURE] 1. having or showing religious devotion; zealous in the performance of religious obligations 2. springing from actual or …   English World dictionary

  • pious — index tartuffish, zealous Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • pious — (adj.) c.1600, from L. pius dutiful, kind, devout, perhaps related to L. purus pure, clean (see PURE (Cf. pure)). Related: Piously; piousness …   Etymology dictionary

  • pious — *devout, religious, pietistic, sanctimonious Analogous words: *holy, sacred, divine, religious: worshiping, adoring, reverencing, venerating, revering (see REVERE): fervent, ardent, fervid (see IMPASSIONED) Antonyms: impious …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • pious — [adj] dedicated, religious born again*, clerical, devoted, devout, divine, ecclesiastical, godly, goody goody*, orthodox, prayerful, priestly, reverent, righteous, sacred, saintly, sanctimonious, spiritual; concept 401 Ant. atheist, impious,… …   New thesaurus

  • pious — ► ADJECTIVE 1) devoutly religious. 2) making a hypocritical display of virtue. 3) (of a hope) sincere but unlikely to be fulfilled. DERIVATIVES piously adverb piousness noun. ORIGIN Latin pius dutiful …   English terms dictionary

  • pious — pi|ous [ˈpaıəs] adj [Date: 1400 1500; : Latin; Origin: pius] 1.) having strong religious beliefs, and showing this in the way you behave →↑piety ▪ He was a quiet, pious man. 2.) if you describe what someone says as pious talk, words etc, you mean …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • pious — adjective Etymology: Middle English, from Latin pius Date: 15th century 1. a. marked by or showing reverence for deity and devotion to divine worship b. marked by conspicuous religiosity < a hypocrite a thing all pious words and uncharitable… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • pious — adjective 1) a pious family Syn: religious, devout, God fearing, churchgoing, spiritual, prayerful, holy, godly, saintly, dedicated, reverent, dutiful, righteous Ant: irreligious …   Thesaurus of popular words

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