captivity

noun
cap·​tiv·​i·​ty | \ kap-ˈti-və-tē How to pronounce captivity (audio) \

Definition of captivity

1 : the state of being captive some birds thrive in captivity
2 obsolete : a group of captives

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Examples of captivity in a Sentence

The prisoners were released from captivity. the wildlife refuge raises endangered species in captivity and then releases them into the wild

Recent Examples on the Web

Rabbits, like the Tethered, are experimented on for science and have to live out their days in captivity. Ineye Komonibo, Marie Claire, "6 'Us' Easter Eggs You Were Probably Too Freaked Out to Notice," 25 Mar. 2019 Crime is rampant on cruises The creepy captivity of cruises is actually not the most potent case against them. Aditi Shrikant, Vox, "The case against cruises," 15 Nov. 2018 But captivity did not diminish John's sense of calling, or his commitment to mission. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Vice President Mike Pence Pays Tribute to John McCain in Speech at His Memorial Service," 31 Aug. 2018 Otto Warmbier, a college student who was the last American to leave captivity in North Korea, came home in June in a coma from his apparent tortures and died a week later. Tracy Wilkinson, latimes.com, "Trump's reality-show handling of prisoner release belies hard diplomacy ahead with North Korea," 10 May 2018 Director Alexandria Bombach avoids the details of Murad's brutal captivity, showing instead the intense pressure and responsibility the 23-year-old feels as a spokesperson for her people. Chicago Reader, "Mr. Rogers meets Mexican drug cartels at the Doc10 documentary festival," 29 Mar. 2018 At present, 3,783 Asian elephants are estimated to live in captivity in Thailand alone—and the majority of them work in the tourism sector. Ashlea Halpern, Condé Nast Traveler, "Is It Ever Okay to Ride Elephants While on Vacation? It’s Complicated...," 18 Oct. 2018 The White House worked with Egypt to release Aya Hijazi, an Egyptian-American aid worker, from captivity in April 2017. Alex Ward, Vox, "Turkey releases US Pastor Andrew Brunson in a big win for Trump," 12 Oct. 2018 The most immediate benefit will be the release of thousands of Yemenis from captivity on both sides. Mohammed Al-jaber, WSJ, "The Saudis Want Peace in Yemen," 23 Dec. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for captivity

Last Updated

8 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for captivity

The first known use of captivity was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for captivity

captivity

noun

English Language Learners Definition of captivity

: the state of being kept in a place (such as a prison or a cage) and not being able to leave or be free : the state or condition of being captive

captivity

noun
cap·​tiv·​i·​ty | \ kap-ˈti-və-tē How to pronounce captivity (audio) \

Kids Definition of captivity

: the state of being held prisoner : the state of being captive

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More from Merriam-Webster on captivity

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with captivity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for captivity

Spanish Central: Translation of captivity

Nglish: Translation of captivity for Spanish Speakers

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