From Middle English unbilefe, unbileve, equivalent to un- + belief.
unbelief (usually uncountable, plural unbeliefs)
- An absence (or rejection) of belief, especially religious belief
- 1526, [William Tyndale, transl.], The Newe Testamẽt […] (Tyndale Bible), [Worms, Germany: Peter Schöffer], →OCLC, Mark vj:[5–6], folio lj, recto:
- And he coulde there ſhewe no myracles butt leyd his hondꝭ apon a feawe ſicke foolke ãd healed thẽ. And he merveyled at their vnbelefe.
- 1931, William Faulkner, Sanctuary, Vintage, published 1993, page 35:
- On hands and knees he looked at the empty siding and up at the sunfilled sky with unbelief and despair.
- 2009, Diarmaid MacCulloch, A History of Christianity, Penguin, published 2010, page 781:
- Soon Spinoza was regarded as the standard-bearer for unbelief, even though pervading his carefully-worded writings there is a clear notion of a divine spirit inhabiting the world, and a profound sense of wonder and reverence for mystery.
lack of belief