austerity

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noun aus·ter·i·ty \ȯ-ˈster-ə-tē, -ˈste-rə- also -ˈstir-ə-\

Definition of austerity

plural

austerities

  1. 1 :  the quality or state of being austere: such asa :  a stern and serious quality the formal austerity of his mannerb :  a plain and simple quality the austerity of the design

  2. 2 :  enforced or extreme economy especially on a national scale lived through years of austerity after the war fiscal austerity a series of austerity measures [=measures taken to reduce spending]

  3. 3a :  an austere act, manner, or attitude monastic self-denial and austeritiesb :  an ascetic (see ascetic 1) practice

Examples of austerity in a Sentence

  1. the austerity of the design

  2. The austerity of their lifestyle was surprising.

  3. They lived through years of austerity after the war.

  4. the austerities practiced by monks

Recent Examples of austerity from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of austerity

see austere



AUSTERITY Defined for English Language Learners

austerity

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noun

Definition of austerity for English Language Learners

  • : a simple and plain quality : an austere quality

  • : a situation in which there is not much money and it is spent only on things that are necessary

  • austerities : things that are done to live in a simple and plain way


AUSTERITY Defined for Kids

austerity

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noun aus·ter·i·ty \ȯ-ˈster-ə-tē\

Definition of austerity for Students

  1. :  lack of all luxury



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a severe test

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