AskDefine | Define deicide

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. The killing of a god or goddess
  2. The killer of a god or goddess
  3. The crucifixion of Jesus.

Usage notes

The word is used within the context of the heresy of supersessionism. From the point of view of orthodox Christian theology, it is not possible to kill God; rather, it was Jesus in his human nature who died, and furthermore, as the death of Jesus on the cross was necessary for the redemption of mankind, accusing Jews of being Christ killers is not merely wrong, but a grave heresy which seriously undermines the doctrine of the atonement.

Derived terms

Extensive Definition

For the American death metal band, see Deicide (band)
Deicide is the killing of a god: either the God of a monotheistic religion, or one of the gods of a polytheistic religion.


The word derives from medieval Latin dei- ("god"), and -cida, from the verb caedere ("to cut down"). As with some other words that share the same suffix - suicide, homicide, patricide, etc. -the word can refer either to the act or to the person who commits the act.

In Christianity

Jesus was crucified some time between the years 26 and 36. If, as Christian theology holds, Jesus is a God, an incarnation of a God, or an aspect of a God, the ones responsible for the crucifixion would be guilty of deicide, knowingly or not. The question of this responsibility has been controversial within Christianity, and sometimes a cause of antisemitism.

In Fiction

  • The death of gods is prominent in the DC Comics Universe with the onslaught of Final Crisis and the twilight of the Fourth World. The Guardians of the Universe even gave their Green Lantern officers a code (1011) for an occurrence of deicide.
  • In the Star Trek universe, the Klingon religion held that when the gods created Kortar, the first Klingon, he killed his gods and burned their paradise to ashes.
  • In the popular comic series Preacher, the major plotline involved tracking God down and making him account for his actions. In the end God is killed by the Saint of Killers, who also has been noted for killing the Devil for insulting him.

See also

deicide in German: Gottesmord
deicide in Spanish: Deicidio
deicide in French: Peuple déicide
deicide in Italian: Deicidio
deicide in Portuguese: Deicídio
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