an·​tiq·​ui·​ty | \ an-ˈti-kwə-tē How to pronounce antiquity (audio) \
plural antiquities

Definition of antiquity

1 : ancient times especially : those before the Middle Ages a town that dates from antiquity
2 : the quality of being ancient a castle of great antiquity
3 antiquities plural
a : relics or monuments (such as coins, statues, or buildings) of ancient times a museum of Greek antiquities
b : matters relating to the life or culture of ancient times the study of Germanic antiquities
4 : the people of ancient times records left by antiquity

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Synonyms & Antonyms for antiquity



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Examples of antiquity in a Sentence

The town dates from antiquity. A palace stood here in antiquity. a museum of Roman antiquities
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Recent Examples on the Web Archaeologists would later find the king’s mummy in the Royal Mummy Cache nearby, where it had been moved in antiquity for safekeeping. National Geographic, "This pharaoh's painted tomb was missing its mummy," 25 June 2020 The use of honey has been well-documented since antiquity, dating as far back as the Stone Age. Miriam Fauzia, USA TODAY, "Fact check: A mix of honey and cinnamon may have some health benefits, more studies needed," 15 June 2020 Many were not excavated in an orderly way to preserve their composition and have been acquired through antiquity dealers, which makes their origin more difficult to trace. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Animal DNA is helping unlock some Dead Sea Scrolls secrets," 2 June 2020 These are the questions that the historian Douglas Boin, the author of several specialized studies about late antiquity, sets out to answer in Alaric the Goth: An Outsider’s History of the Fall of Rome, a smart book for the general reader. Cullen Murphy, The Atlantic, "The Man Who Sacked Rome," 9 June 2020 The Ars is a didactic poem, a form that goes back to the beginnings of ancient literature and remained vibrant into late antiquity. Gregory Hays, The New York Review of Books, "Horace’s How-To," 27 May 2020 Warburg was convinced that antiquity was a starting point for the study of artists of the Renaissance, but also that its themes had emotional meaning that resonated for modern times — particularly in a period of instability and change. Martha Schwendener, New York Times, "This Atlas of Art and Memory Is a Wonder of the Modern World," 14 May 2020 The Italian region of Emilia-Romagna has the oldest scagliola antiquities in all of Italy, which makes sense given the prominence of selenite in the Modena and Reggio Emilia Apennines. Mary Elizabeth Andriotis, House Beautiful, "8 Art Exhibits You Can Virtually Visit Right Now," 20 Apr. 2020 The British Museum strongly supports the fight against trade in illicit antiquities. The Economist, "Exploiting Brexit talks Will Britain lose the Elgin marbles?," 20 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'antiquity.' 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 antiquity

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for antiquity

see antique entry 1

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Time Traveler for antiquity

Time Traveler

The first known use of antiquity was in the 13th century

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Statistics for antiquity

Last Updated

9 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Antiquity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for antiquity


How to pronounce antiquity (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of antiquity

: ancient times
: very great age
: objects from ancient times


an·​tiq·​ui·​ty | \ an-ˈti-kwə-tē How to pronounce antiquity (audio) \

Kids Definition of antiquity

1 : ancient times The town dates from antiquity.
2 : very great age a castle of great antiquity

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