Genuflect | Meaning, Definition & Examples

Genuflect (pronounced [jen-yoo-flekt]) is a verb referring to the act of briefly bending down on one knee as a sign of respect or worship (similar to kneeling). It’s a common feature of Christian religious practices and marriage proposals.

“Genuflect” is also used metaphorically to describe the behavior of someone who is overly humble or subservient.

Examples: Genuflect in a sentence
Patrick didn’t genuflect when he proposed to his fiancée.

The protagonist of the story refused to genuflect before the evil king.

I’m not someone who genuflects for powerful people. I treat everyone equally.

Genuflection

Genuflection is a noun that refers to the act of genuflecting (i.e., touching one knee to the floor or ground as a sign of respect).

“Genuflexion” is often used as a variant spelling of genuflection, due to the word’s Latin origin. However, “genuflexion” is not accepted as a valid spelling by most modern dictionaries and is best avoided in formal or academic writing.

Examples: Genuflection in a sentence
Many cultures do not practice genuflection during marriage proposals.

Genuflection is a customary part of Catholic worship.

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Frequently asked questions

What is a synonym of genuflect?

Some synonyms of genuflect include:

What does genuflexion mean?

“Genuflexion” is often used as a variant spelling of genuflection, a noun that refers to the act of genuflecting (i.e., touching one knee to the floor or ground as a sign of respect).

However, “genuflexion” is not accepted as a valid spelling by most dictionaries and is best avoided in formal or academic writing.

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Ryan, E. (2022, November 19). Genuflect | Meaning, Definition & Examples. Scribbr. Retrieved December 5, 2022, from https://www.scribbr.com/definitions/genuflect/

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Eoghan Ryan

Eoghan has a lot of experience with theses and dissertations at bachelor's, MA, and PhD level. He has taught university English courses, helping students to improve their research and writing.