Unction is a specially-prepared substance meant to bless or heal — the use of special oils in a religious ceremony or the medicine you might put on your chest if you are congested.

Unction refers to a religious leader placing special oils, usually on the forehead, of people during a ceremony of healing or blessing. Another meaning of unction describes people who are very pleased with their own good works, maybe even bragging about all the people they help at the homeless shelter or soup kitchen. This kind of unction is also called oily, almost like these smug people are oozing self-centeredness.

Definitions of unction
  1. noun
    anointing as part of a religious ceremony or healing ritual
    synonyms: inunction
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    type of:
    anointing, anointment
    the act of applying oil or an oily liquid
    religious ceremony, religious ritual
    a ceremony having religious meaning
  2. noun
    semisolid preparation (usually containing a medicine) applied externally as a remedy or for soothing an irritation
    synonyms: balm, ointment, salve, unguent
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    an ointment used in treating bruises
    baby oil
    an ointment for babies
    an ointment containing a fragrant resin
    carron oil
    an ointment formerly used to treat burns
    a hard medicated paste made of lard or oil mixed with wax or resin
    chrism, chrisom, holy oil, sacramental oil
    a consecrated ointment consisting of a mixture of oil and balsam
    lip balm
    a balm applied to the lips
    mentholated salve
    a salve containing menthol
    mercurial ointment
    an ointment containing mercury
    zinc ointment
    an ointment containing zinc that is used to treat certain skin diseases
    camphor ice
    a cerate made of camphor and wax and spermaceti and castor oil
    type of:
    curative, cure, remedy, therapeutic
    a medicine or therapy that cures disease or relieve pain
  3. noun
    excessive but superficial compliments given with affected charm
    synonyms: fulsomeness, smarm
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    type of:
    accolade, compliment
    a remark (or act) expressing praise and admiration
  4. noun
    smug self-serving earnestness
    synonyms: fulsomeness, oiliness, oleaginousness, smarminess, unctuousness
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    type of:
    insincerity by virtue of pretending to have qualities or beliefs that you do not really have
Word Family

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