- a formal or ceremonial act or procedure prescribed or customary in religious or other solemn use: rites of baptism; sacrificial rites.
- a particular form or system of religious or other ceremonial practice: the Roman rite.
- (often initial capital letter) a liturgy or liturgical system, especially one of the historical versions of the Eucharistic service: the Anglican Rite.
- (sometimes initial capital letter) Eastern Church, Western Church. a division or differentiation of churches based on liturgical practice.
- any customary observance or practice: the rite of afternoon tea.
- a formal act or procedure prescribed or customary in religious ceremoniesfertility rites; the rite of baptism
- a particular body of such acts or procedures, esp of a particular Christian Churchthe Latin rite
- a Christian Churchthe Greek rite
early 14c., from Latin ritus “religious observance or ceremony, custom, usage,” perhaps from PIE root *re(i)- “to count, number” (cf. Greek arithmos “number,” Old English rim “number;” see read (v.)). Rite of passage (1909) is translated from French rite de passage, coined by French anthropologist Arnold van Gennep (1873-1957).