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(Disclaimer: not only I tried googling the answer, I also asked native english speakers, but they couldn't give me a definitive answer).

Basically, In one of my conversations, I said the following sentence:

They haven't contributed much to the world aside zealotness.

Then I got confused, and I realized I don't know what is the "derivative" for this word.

hot -> heat
serious -> seriousness
zealot -> ???

Google remotely suggests zealousness, but it seems that this word actually backs-up the word "zealous" and not "zealot".

So, Is there an actual idiomatic way of saying "zealotness"

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    Don’t you just mean zealotry here?
    – tchrist
    Commented Aug 10, 2017 at 15:52
  • perfect! post that as an answer and I'll mark it as an answer!
    – David Haim
    Commented Aug 10, 2017 at 15:53
  • The rare zelotism, zelotic also exist, as do special-use nouns like zelator, zelatrix, zelatrice — not to mention zelophobia and zelotypia, which are related but different because they're actually about the now-obsolete zealousy for jealousy. To work up a full answer, one should delve into all of these, and I have to jump on a cross-country flight now. Perhaps someone else can cover all these today.
    – tchrist
    Commented Aug 10, 2017 at 15:59
  • 1
    @tchrist I would strongly advise against jumping on cross-country flights. You might fall off, and it’s a long way down. Commented Aug 10, 2017 at 16:00

1 Answer 1

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The shortest noun from which zealot is derived is zeal. That is, both the person and the state of mind have direct precursors in Latin, which in turn borrowed them from Greek. Now, zeal has a slightly less specific connotation in modern English; but, brevity being the soul of wit, it will often do the job.

Where you truly need a more specific word, use the fairly common word zealotry.

I should advise against zealotness, which sounds as though the more idiomatic word(s) did not come to mind.

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  • I know "zealotness" is not a real word, I just made it up in the heat of the conversation, realizing it's not a real word.
    – David Haim
    Commented Aug 10, 2017 at 16:17
  • @DavidHaim: Oh, that wasn't aimed at you, just for future readers. Commented Aug 10, 2017 at 19:58

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