Definitions for: Zeal


[n] excessive fervor to do something or accomplish some end; "he had an absolute zeal for litigation"
[n] a feeling of strong eagerness (usually in favor of a person or cause); "they were imbued with a revolutionary ardor"; "he felt a kind of religious zeal"



Webster (1913) Definition: Zeal (z[=e]l), n. [F. z[`e]le; cf. Pg. & It. zelo, Sp.
zelo, celo; from L. zelus, Gr. ?, probably akin to ? to boil.
Cf. Yeast, Jealous.]
1. Passionate ardor in the pursuit of anything; eagerness in
favor of a person or cause; ardent and active interest;
engagedness; enthusiasm; fervor. ``Ambition varnished o'er
with zeal.'' --Milton. ``Zeal, the blind conductor of the
will.'' --Dryden. ``Zeal's never-dying fire.'' --Keble.

I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but
not according to knowledge. --Rom. x. 2.

A zeal for liberty is sometimes an eagerness to
subvert with little care what shall be established.
--Johnson.

2. A zealot. [Obs.] --B. Jonson.


Zeal, v. i.
To be zealous. [Obs. & R.] --Bacon.

Synonyms: elan

See Also: ardor, ardour, avidity, avidness, eagerness, fervency, fervidness, fervor, fervour, fire, keenness

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Famous Quotes Containing Zeal:


There is a holy, mistaken zeal in politics, as well as in religion. By persuading others, we convince ourselves.

-- Junius ( -)

My father and uncles and all their friends turned their lungs black trying to satisfy my collector's zeal.

-- Edward G. Robinson (Romanian Actor)

We do have a zeal for laughter in most situations, give or take a dentist.

-- Joseph Heller (American Novelist)

Never let your zeal outrun your charity. The former is but human, the latter is divine.

-- Hosea Ballou (American Clergyman)

Zeal is fit for wise men, but flourishes chiefly among fools.

-- John Tillotson (British Theologian)

We have been filled with grief as we have witnessed the decline of the North American Church that was once filled with missionary zeal and yet now seems determined to bury itself in a deadly embrace with the spirit of the age.

-- Peter Akinola (Nigerian Clergyman)

All enterprises that are entered into with indiscreet zeal may be pursued with great vigor at first, but are sure to collapse in the end.

-- Tacitus (Roman Historian)

Experience shows that success is due less to ability than to zeal.

-- Charles Buxton (English Public Servant)

When suave politeness, tempering bigot zeal, corrected 'I believe' to 'one does feel'.

-- Ronald Knox (English Theologian)

Zeal will do more than knowledge.

-- William Hazlitt (English Critic)

The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in the insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well meaning but without understanding.

-- Louis D. Brandeis (American Judge)

A zeal for the defence of their country led these heroes to the scene of action, though with a few men to attack a powerful army of experienced warriors.

-- Daniel Boone (American Explorer)

A policy is a temporary creed liable to be changed, but while it holds good it has got to be pursued with apostolic zeal.

-- Mohandas Gandhi (Indian Leader)

Zeal is very blind, or badly regulated, when it encroaches upon the rights of others.

-- Pasquier Quesnel (French Theologian)

The zeal, bravery, and good behavior of the officers and men on the night of June 30, and during July 1, was commendable in the extreme.

-- John Buford (American Soldier)

When you are laboring for others let it be with the same zeal as if it were for yourself.

-- Confucius (Chinese Philosopher)

Zeal without knowledge is fire without light.

-- Thomas Fuller (English Clergyman)

Kindness has converted more sinners than zeal, eloquence, or learning.

-- Frederick William Faber (British Theologian)

I have an almost religious zeal... not for technology per se, but for the Internet which is for me, the nervous system of mother Earth, which I see as a living creature, linking up.

-- Dan Millman (American Author)

Zeal without humanity is like a ship without a rudder, liable to be stranded at any moment.

-- Owen Feltham (British Author)

The Mohawks have on all occasions shown their zeal and loyalty to the Great King; yet they have been very badly treated by his people.

-- Joseph Brant (Mohawk Soldier)

Missionary zeal does not grow out of intellectual beliefs, nor out of theological arguments, but out of love. If I do not love a person I am not moved to help him by proofs that he is in need; if I do love him, I wait for no proof of a special need to urge me to help him.

-- Roland Allen (English Clergyman)

He that does a base thing in zeal for his friend burns the golden thread that ties their hearts together.

-- Jeremy Taylor (British Clergyman)

Zeal is a volcano, the peak of which the grass of indecisiveness does not grow.

-- Khalil Gibran ( Poet)


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