from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In the early and medieval church, an undergarment or shirt of haircloth, worn next the skin by monks or others as a means of mortifying the flesh without ostentation; a hair shirt. Also cilice.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • There was a goat's-hair cloth called cilicium manufactured in Cilicia, and largely used for tents, Saul's trade was probably that of making tents of this hair cloth.

    Smith's Bible Dictionary 1884

  • The other he was unable to recognize at once, for a mantle of coarse woollen stuff, called cilicium, concealed a part of his face.

    Quo Vadis: a narrative of the time of Nero Henryk Sienkiewicz 1881

  • The goat's-hair cloth was called "cilicium," from the name of the province.

    The Life of St. Paul James Stalker 1887

  • "cilicium," or Cilician cloth, and was used for tents, &c. Paul, a

    Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible 1871

  • She wore a cilicium, the medieval-style hair shirt that scratched and tore the flesh, beneath her loose-fitting clothes.

    The Poet Prince KATHLEEN MCGOWAN 2010

  • Esau's hands, and Jacob's voice: yea, and many of those holy friars, sanctified men, Cappam, saith Hierom, et cilicium induunt, sed intus latronem tegunt.

    Anatomy of Melancholy 2007

  • They have single rooms instead of separate dwellings, two recreations every day, eat together daily, are not bound to wear the cilicium, and if ill are cared for in an infirmary.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 3: Brownson-Clairvaux 1840-1916 1913

  • It was famous for its goat's-hair cloth, called cilicium.

    Easton's Bible Dictionary M.G. Easton 1897

  • At thy death thy _cilicium_ shall be taken to the patriarch of Alexandria, and the great Athanasius, white with glory, shall kiss it as the relic of a saint.

    Thais Anatole France 1884

  • While C. hederifolium and C. cilicium typically bloom in late summer into fall, C. coum is a spring bloomer.

    The Martha's Vineyard Times News Headlines 2009


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