Latin cultus (cultivation, culture). See cult.


cultus (plural cultuses)

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  1. Established or accepted religious rites or customs of worship; state of religious development.

See alsoEdit

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for cultus in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913)



Borrowed from Latin cultus.


  • IPA(key): /ˈkʏl.tʏs/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: cul‧tus


cultus m (plural cultussen, diminutive cultusje n)

  1. (religion) cult, a particular tradition of worship or veneration of deities, ancestors, guardians or saints
  2. (religion) religious service

Usage notesEdit

  • For the pejorative sense of cult (socially marginal, proscribed or deviant religious group), see sekte.

Derived termsEdit


  • Afrikaans: kultus



Etymology 1Edit

Perfect passive participle of colō (till, cultivate; worship).


cultus (feminine culta, neuter cultum, comparative cultior, superlative cultissimus); first/second-declension participle

  1. tilled, cultivated, having been cultivated
  2. protected, nurtured, having been protected
  3. (figuratively) worshipped, honored, having been worshipped
  4. (figuratively) dressed, clothed, adorned, having been adorned
    • 8 CE, Ovid, Fasti 3.538:
      cultaque diffūsīs saltat amīca comīs
      and, having been adorned, the girlfriend is dancing with her hair undone
      Or, in more natural English:
      and the fashionably dressed girlfriend is dancing with her hair undone

First/second-declension adjective.

Number Singular Plural
Case / Gender Masculine Feminine Neuter Masculine Feminine Neuter
Nominative cultus culta cultum cultī cultae culta
Genitive cultī cultae cultī cultōrum cultārum cultōrum
Dative cultō cultō cultīs
Accusative cultum cultam cultum cultōs cultās culta
Ablative cultō cultā cultō cultīs
Vocative culte culta cultum cultī cultae culta

Etymology 2Edit


cultus m (genitive cultūs); fourth declension

  1. The act of tilling or cultivating.
  2. The act of honoring or worshipping, reverence, adoration, veneration; loyalty
  3. A religious group, cult, sect.
  4. Care directed to the refinement of life, cultural pursuit, civilization, culture, style; elegance, polish, refinement.
  5. Style of dress, external appearance, clothing, attire; ornament, decoration, splendor.
  6. (rare) The act of laboring at, labor, care, cultivation, culture.
  7. (rare) Training, education, culture.

Fourth-declension noun.

Case Singular Plural
Nominative cultus cultūs
Genitive cultūs cultuum
Dative cultuī cultibus
Accusative cultum cultūs
Ablative cultū cultibus
Vocative cultus cultūs
Related termsEdit


  • cultus”, in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • cultus”, in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • cultus in Charles du Fresne du Cange’s Glossarium Mediæ et Infimæ Latinitatis (augmented edition with additions by D. P. Carpenterius, Adelungius and others, edited by Léopold Favre, 1883–1887)
  • cultus in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire illustré latin-français, Hachette
  • Carl Meißner; Henry William Auden (1894) Latin Phrase-Book[1], London: Macmillan and Co.
    • mental culture: animi, ingenii cultus (not cultura)
    • to be quite uncivilised: omnis cultus et humanitatis expertem esse
    • to be quite uncivilised: ab omni cultu et humanitate longe abesse (B. G. 1. 1. 3)
    • worship of the gods; divine service: cultus dei, deorum (N. D. 2. 3. 8)
    • (ambiguous) to civilise men, a nation: homines, gentem a fera agrestique vita ad humanum cultum civilemque deducere (De Or. 1. 8. 33)