List of religious slurs
The following is a list of religious slurs or religious insults in the English language that are, or have been, used as insinuations or allegations about adherents of a given religion or to refer to them in a derogatory (critical or disrespectful), pejorative (disapproving or contemptuous), or insulting manner.
- Bible beater (also "Bible basher" in the UK, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa)
- A dysphemism for people who believe in the fundamentalist authority of the Bible, particularly those from a Pentecostal or fundamentalist denomination. It is also a slang term for an evangelising Christian. Commonly used universally against Christians who are perceived to go out of their way to energetically preach their faith to others.
- Bible thumper (mainly US and Canada)
- Someone perceived as aggressively imposing their Christian beliefs upon others. The term derives from preachers thumping their hands down on the Bible, or thumping the Bible itself, to emphasize a point during a sermon. The term's target domain is broad and can often extend to anyone engaged in a public show of religion, fundamentalist or not. The term is most commonly used in English-speaking countries.
- Cafeteria Christian
- used by some Christians, and others, to accuse other Christian individuals or denominations of selecting which Christian doctrines they will follow, and which they will not.
- God botherer (Australia, UK, New Zealand)
- Predominantly tagged to a Christian, usually one who openly declares their faith, especially when unwelcome.
- Rice Christian/Ricebag (primarily from East and South Asian countries)
- Someone who has formally declared themself a Christian for material benefits rather than for religious reasons.
- a follower of the Churches of Christ, from American Restoration Movement leaders Thomas Campbell and Alexander Campbell, the latter being one of two key people considered the founders of the movement.
- Holy Roller (US)
- an enthusiastic Protestant prone to rolling on the floor, suffering from fits or "speaking in tongues" (Pentecostals during worship or prayer). The term holy roller, however, is applied to some Evangelical Protestants, especially charismatics, if they are vocal about their own religious views or critical of individuals who do not meet their moral standards. Similar to Bible thumper.
- Jaffa (Ireland/UK)
- a Protestant (see Orangie); named after a common orange-flavoured cake/biscuit in the ROI and UK.
- Orangie (Ireland/UK)
- a pro-British Ulster Protestant, referring to supporters of the Orange Order.
- Prod, proddy dog (Australian Catholics; Scottish and Irish Catholics, particularly school children)
- a Protestant, particularly a rival child from a Protestant school. "Proddywhoddy" and "proddywoddy" are used in children's school rhymes in Cork.
- Shaker (US)
- a member of the United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Appearing. Originated as "Shaking Quakers", in reference to their similarity to Quakers as well as their charismatic worship practices, which involved dancing, shouting, and speaking in tongues. The term was originally derogatory, but very early on was embraced and used by the Shakers themselves.
- Soup-taker (Ireland)
- a person who has sold out their beliefs, referring to the Great Famine of Ireland when some Catholics converted to a Protestant faith in order to gain access to a free meal.
- Left-Footer (especially Ireland and Scotland)
- an informal phrase for a Roman Catholic particularly amongst the armed forces in the UK.
- a term which was originally used to refer to the Fenian Brotherhood and the Irish Republican Brotherhood, organizations which supported a united Ireland. Today the term is used as a sectarian slur by Protestants, especially in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Australia.
- Mackerel Snapper
- a Roman Catholic; the term originated in the U.S. in the 1850s and refers to the custom of Friday abstinence. The Friday abstinence from meat (red meat and poultry) distinguishes Catholics from other Christians, especially in North America.
- Mick (Australia; Canada; UK; US)
- a Roman Catholic — usually an Irish Catholic (a reference to the common "Mc'" patronymic of Irish surnames, or a hypocorism of Michael)
- Papist (Northern Ireland and Scottish Protestants)
- a Roman Catholic person — usually Irish Catholic.
- Red letter tribe
- “A name given to [Catholics] for their keeping so many holy days marked in their almanacks with red letters.”
- Roman Catholic
- a term brought into use by adherents of the Church of England in regard to Branch Theory as well as distaste to the Catholic Church’s association with the term Catholic.
Latter Day Saint movement
- a term for a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints which was coined by early opposition and put into use by newspapers in Missouri and Illinois who didn't want to refer to the Latter-day Saints as Christians or Saints, and so used a word from one of their books of scripture, The Book of Mormon. Early leaders spoke out against this use of the term due to revelation given about the Church's name, but because of broad use in the press and by locals who opposed the Church, it remained in colloquial use. To this day, many refer to the Church as the "Mormon Church," though leaders have been asking to be referred to by their proper name since 1838. However, the term has been used in the sect's television advertising. There has been a renewed effort starting in 2018 to avoid the use of the epithet.  There is some disagreement within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day saints if the term is offensive, or just less preferred. Some style guides consider 'Mormon' to be the appropriate term in many historical (Mormon pioneers, Mormon Battalion, Mormon Trail ) and demographic contexts, as Mormons are not exclusively members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. There are other sects in which the term is not offensive and may be preferred. (List of denominations in the Latter Day Saint movement)
- Jack Mormon
- a non-faithful LDS person or a non-Mormon altogether. Jack Mormon is usually used by non-Mormons to describe Mormons that do not follow the Word of Wisdom (dietary and health practices that exclude the use of tobacco or alcohol) and by Mormons to describe members that do not sufficiently follow practices. It is also used by Mormons to describe those who were Mormon but remain friendly to the Church. It may be applied to ex-Mormons who have repudiated the Church and its teachings but that is a rare usage.
For the word Jew itself as a perceived or actual slur, see Jew (word)#Perception of offensiveness.
Most of these 'slurs' are of Jewish origin and part of the Yiddish language as referenced beside each word.
- Abbie, Abe, and Abie (North America)
- a Jewish male. From the proper name Abraham. Originated before the 1950s.
- a Jew, from the Hebrew Chaim ("life"). Also used in the term Hymietown, a nickname for Brooklyn, New York, and as a first name.
- Ikey, ike, ik
- a Jew [from Isaac]
- Ikey-mo, ikeymo
- a Jew [from Isaac and Moses]
- a young Jewish male, originally young Jewish boys who sold counterfeit coins in 18th century London.
- the Yiddish word for "circle" is kikel (// KY-kəl)—illiterate Jews who entered the United States at Ellis Island signed their names with a circle instead of a cross because they associated the cross with Christianity.
- Mocky, moky, moxy, mockey, mockie, mocky (U.S.)
- a Jew. First used in the 1930s, possibly from the Yiddish word makeh meaning "plague".
- Moch (U.S.)
- a Jew [first used in the 1960s as an abbreviated form of mocky (q.v.)]
- Red Sea pedestrian (mainly Australian)
- a Jew, from the story of Moses leading the Jewish people out of Egypt.
- Jewish people as shrewd and money-loving; named after the famous character from Shakespeare's play "Merchant of Venice".
- Yakubian (Nation of Islam)
- Jewish people; it is often mistaken as describing white people, as the Nation of Islam believes all white people are descended from Yakub, the biblical Jacob. Therefore, white people and Jewish people are considered one and the same.
- Zhyd, zhid, zhydovka, zhidovka
- from Russian and other Slavic languages, originally neutral, but became pejorative during debate over the Jewish question in the 1800s. Its use was banned by the Soviet authorities in the 1930s.
- Corruption of the word "Muslim".
- Quran thumper
- an excessively zealous Muslim.
- Hajji, Haji or Hodgie
- Originated as military slang, now commonly used by non-military personnel to refer to Muslims or Middle Easterners in general. Originating from the word Hajji, an honorific title for Muslims who successfully completed the Hajj to Mecca.
- a term once frequently used in English in a non-pejorative sense, but nowadays considered by Muslims to be offensive because of the suggestion that they worship Mohammed rather than Allah.
- Raghead, Towelhead
- from Islamic wearing of turbans.
- from Osama bin Laden.
- Towelhead, Raghead
- in reference to Sikh headgear (usually turbans), often used in the belief that Sikhs are connected to Islamic terrorism. Also used against anyone wearing turbans or keffiyehs.
- a Scientologist, referring to a passage about clam engrams in L. Ron Hubbard's 1952 book, What To Audit, later renamed Scientology: A History of Man.
- Word for a person who isn't Muslim, but especially for a Christian. Adapted from the Turkish gâvur. In the Ottoman Empire, it was usually applied to Orthodox Christians.
- a person who does not belong to a widely held religion (especially one who is not a Christian, Jewish, or Muslim) as regarded by those who do.
- a term used generally for non-believers.
- A person who is a non Muslim. Widely used in Muslim majority countries.
- a person who holds religious beliefs that differ from main world religions. Synonymous with heathen.
- Shiksa (female), Shegetz (male)
- (Yiddish) A non-Jewish girl or boy or one who is of Jewish descent, but does not practice Orthodox Judaism.
Religious practitioners in general
- Cult, Cultist
- used as an ad hominem attack against groups with differing doctrines or practices.
Constructs such as ibid., loc. cit. and idem are discouraged by Wikipedia's style guide for footnotes, as they are easily broken. Please improve this article by replacing them with named references (quick guide), or an abbreviated title. (October 2018) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
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Yet a danger does still remain. It is the danger of "cafeteria Christianity," which lets people mix and match traditions any way they want, without discipline and without accountability. Unless we transcend cafeteria Christianity, our practices will be more sarabaite or gyrovague than Benedictine.
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Archbishop Hugo Barrantes Urena of San Jose, Costa Rica, told Costa Ricans in his Easter message to embrace the faith without conditions or short-cuts and to defend the life of the unborn against efforts to legalize abortion. The archbishop warned that “based on a relativistic understanding of the Christian faith and a conditional adherence to the Church, some Catholics seek to construct a Christianity and, consequently, a Church to their own liking, unilateral and outside the identity and mission that Jesus Christ has fundamentally given us.”
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Russellite /rus"euh luyt'/, n. Offensive. a member of the Jehovah's Witnesses. [1875-80, Amer.; after C. T. Russell; see -ITE1]
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russellite ˈrəsəˌlīt noun (-s) Usage: usually capitalized Etymology: Charles Taze Russell died 1916 American religious leader + English -ite : one of the Jehovah's Witnesses — often taken to be offensive
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So finally abstinence from meat on Friday became just a kind of badge of the fact we were Catholics
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At the meeting the appellant called Roman Catholics "rednecks," a name most insulting to them, and challenged them to get up.
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mocky adj. (Offensive slang) Jewish, of or pertaining to the Jewish religion or race in a derogatory manner
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ORIGIN 1930S: perhaps from Yiddish makeh, 'a plague'.
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- Compare: T.L. Brink (2008) Psychology: A Student Friendly Approach. "Unit 13: Social Psychology". pp 320  Archived 26 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine - "Cult is a somewhat derogatory term for a new religious movement, especially one with unusual theological doctrine or one that is abusive of its membership."
- Chuck Shaw – Sects and Cults Archived 25 March 2018 at the Wayback Machine – Greenville Technical College. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
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