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Cop·​tic ˈkäp-tik How to pronounce Coptic (audio)
: an Afro-Asiatic language descended from ancient Egyptian and used as the liturgical language of the Coptic church


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: of or relating to the Copts, their liturgical language, or their church

Examples of Coptic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Anyone seeking evidence of creeping Islamist radicalization in Egypt under President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s repressive regime need look no further than the bombing of the Coptic Orthodox church in Cairo on December 10. Khalil Al-Anani, Foreign Affairs, 8 Jan. 2017 The few remaining Ethiopian monks took shelter on the property of the Egyptian Coptic Church. Hiba Yazbek, New York Times, 15 Apr. 2023 Melbourne officers arrived to the Archangel Michael Coptic Orthodox Church around 7:45 a.m. in response to an incident involving church officials and a man later identified as Mark Patrick Soliman, the agency said in a statement. Lisa Maria Garza,, 21 Feb. 2021
On April 9, suicide bombers attacked Coptic churches in the Egyptian cities of Tanta and Alexandria, killing more than 40 people at Palm Sunday services. Meir Walters, Foreign Affairs, 13 Apr. 2017 The blaze early Sunday ripped through a small Coptic church that also hosted a day care in the crowded Imbaba neighborhood, leaving both parishioners and children caught inside. Heba Farouk Mahfouz, Washington Post, 15 Aug. 2022 Hair-raising accounts of a similar sea monster were recorded by Alexandrian scribes as early as the second century A.D.; these accounts spread through Europe and Asia in Arabic, Coptic, Latin and Old English translations. Nina Goldman, Smithsonian Magazine, 22 June 2023 In a centuries-long conflict, Egyptian Coptic monks and Ethiopian Orthodox monks have competed for the control of a small monastery located on the roof of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, built at the site where Christians believe Christ was crucified, entombed and resurrected. Hiba Yazbek, New York Times, 15 Apr. 2023 Combining his Coptic skills and Young’s decipherment method, Champollion managed to translate additional cartouches and determine the phonetic values of a dozen hieroglyphs. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian Magazine, 27 Sep. 2022 The tragedy is the latest to befall Egypt’s minority Coptic community. Heba Farouk Mahfouz, Washington Post, 15 Aug. 2022 Children were among the dozens of worshippers killed Sunday when a fire ripped through a Coptic church in Cairo, according to reports. Stephen Sorace, Fox News, 14 Aug. 2022 Researchers also found the baluster beds in Germany, which are remarkably like the sixth to seventh-century Coptic beds. Stan Shunpike, Discover Magazine, 16 July 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'Coptic.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use


1668, in the meaning defined above


1677, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of Coptic was in 1668

Dictionary Entries Near Coptic

Cite this Entry

“Coptic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Dec. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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