an·​them | \ ˈan(t)-thəm How to pronounce anthem (audio) \

Definition of anthem

1 : a song or hymn of praise or gladness a patriotic anthem
2 : a usually rousing popular song that typifies or is identified with a particular subculture, movement, or point of view anthems of teenage angst
3a : a psalm or hymn sung antiphonally or responsively
b : a sacred vocal composition with words usually from the Scriptures

Other Words from anthem

anthemic \ ˌan(t)-​ˈthē-​mik How to pronounce anthem (audio) , -​ˈthe-​ \ adjective

Examples of anthem in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The Southern rock anthem was first released in March 2019, and the next month, Blake debuted a nearly four-minute accompanying music video. Selena Barrientos, Good Housekeeping, 10 May 2022 Meet the Phoenix Suns' first male performers in 30 years The national anthem will be sung by local singer-songwriter Sophia Humber. Ed Masley, The Arizona Republic, 10 May 2022 How To Let Go makes an instant anthem out of a taxi driver drowning out a passenger’s sorrows with a timely twist of the volume knob, and Sigrid deploys her falsetto with utmost care throughout. Jason Lipshutz, Billboard, 9 May 2022 The Russian national anthem won’t be played and Russian flag-waving in the ring will not be permitted. Lance Pugmire, USA TODAY, 6 May 2022 With loud music blaring, the last of the Crusaders unloaded as the national anthem was being played. Scott Springer, The Enquirer, 5 May 2022 Spencer is the 12th artist to perform the national anthem since Churchill Downs began the tradition in 2009. Kirby Adams, The Courier-Journal, 2 May 2022 Toeing the rubber where Hall of Famers from Pedro Martinez to Babe Ruth once stood, Shurtleff was in control from the national anthem, cruising through the first two innings on just 14 pitches, 12 of which were strikes. Brendan Kurie,, 29 Apr. 2022 Burj Khalifa was lit up with the Turkish flag and Turkey’s national anthem blared out. Andrew Wilks, ajc, 28 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of anthem

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3a

History and Etymology for anthem

Middle English antem, from Old English antefn, from Late Latin antiphona, from Late Greek antiphōna, plural of antiphōnon, from Greek, neuter of antiphōnos responsive, from anti- + phōnē sound — more at ban entry 1

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

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Last Updated

13 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Anthem.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for anthem


an·​them | \ ˈan-thəm How to pronounce anthem (audio) \

Kids Definition of anthem

1 : a sacred song usually sung by a church choir
2 : a patriotic song

More from Merriam-Webster on anthem

Nglish: Translation of anthem for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of anthem for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about anthem


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