an·​gel | \ ˈān-jəl How to pronounce angel (audio) \

Definition of angel

1a : a spiritual being superior to humans in power and intelligence especially : one in the lowest rank in the celestial hierarchy
b angels plural : an order of angels — see celestial hierarchy
2 : an attendant spirit or guardian guardian angels who watch over us
3 : a usually white-robed winged figure of human form in fine art
4 : messenger, harbinger an angel of death
5 : a person who is like an angel (as in looks or behavior) Your son is such an angel. She's no angel. Be an angel and get me a cup of tea, would you?
6 Christian Science : inspiration from God
7 : one (such as a backer of a theatrical venture) who aids or supports with money or influence Angels funded the start-up company.

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Synonyms & Antonyms for angel



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Examples of angel in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In 1940, the German critic Walter Benjamin wrote about an angel in a Paul Klee painting. Robinson Meyer, The Atlantic, "What the Death of iTunes Says About Our Digital Habits," 2 Jan. 2020 There were a pair of highlights, including Shelby Harris making a snow angel after sacking Patrick Mahomes and Drew Lock’s 43-yard completion to Noah Fant on fourth down. Joe Nguyen, The Denver Post, "Broncos vs. Chiefs — a roundup of Denver’s Week 15 loss in Kansas City," 16 Dec. 2019 What: In this musical adaptation of the Frank Capra classic film, a down-on-his-luck George Bailey meets Clarence, an angel in hot pursuit of his wings. Andrea Simakis, cleveland, "Cleveland Holiday Arts Guide 2019: Naughty and Nice Offerings on Cleveland’s Stages.," 27 Nov. 2019 In internal messages, employees traded comments about their future Rolexes and memes of a man making a snow-angel in dollar bills. Hanna Kozlowska, Quartz, "A precious-metals scheme used fear and Facebook to trick older conservatives out of their savings," 18 Nov. 2019 Young people with a chance that was snatched from a little angel. Roy S. Johnson |, al, "Johnson: Our hurt for Kamille 'Cupcake’ McKinney demands more from this Classic, from all of us," 23 Oct. 2019 Social media reacted this week when a YouTube channel, producing kiddie cartoons, posted a video episode about a white angel who is cursed and turns into a Black woman. Tanya A. Christian, Essence, "YouTube Pulls Kid Cartoon With Racist Messaging," 26 July 2019 David Tennant as a charismatic demon, Michael Sheen as a fussy angel, John Hamm as snobby archangel Gabriel—is perfect, and the whole show is so sinfully funny that people literally think it should be stopped. Wired Staff, WIRED, "Everything You Should Binge Over the July 4th Weekend," 3 July 2019 True to his mentor Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Rivera’s play is simultaneously lyrical and venal, and populated with real angels and devils. cleveland, "‘Marisol’ at Cleveland Public Theatre is a poetic visit to a parallel universe," 11 Mar. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'angel.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of angel

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for angel

Middle English, from Old English engel & Anglo-French angele; both from Late Latin angelus, from Greek angelos, literally, messenger

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Time Traveler for angel

Time Traveler

The first known use of angel was before the 12th century

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Statistics for angel

Last Updated

28 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Angel.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Mar. 2020.

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More Definitions for angel


How to pronounce angel (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of angel

: a spiritual being that serves especially as a messenger from God or as a guardian of human beings
informal : a person (such as a child) who is very good, kind, beautiful, etc.


an·​gel | \ ˈān-jəl How to pronounce angel (audio) \

Kids Definition of angel

1 : a spiritual being serving God especially as a messenger
2 : a person who is very good, kind, or beautiful

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