1. The theory or doctrine that all forms of government are oppressive and undesirable and should be abolished.
2. Active resistance and terrorism against the state, as used by some anarchists.
3. Rejection of all forms of coercive control and authority: "He was inclined to anarchism; he hated system and organization and uniformity" (Bertrand Russell).
anar·chist (-kĭst) n.
an′ar·chistic (-kĭstĭk) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.