car·​nage | \ˈkär-nij \

Definition of carnage 

1 : the flesh of slain animals or humans a multitude of dogs came to feast on the carnage— T. B. Macaulay

2 : great and usually bloody slaughter or injury (as in battle) the carnage of war

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Examples of carnage in a Sentence

Reporters described the highway accident as a scene of carnage. the appalling carnage in that war-torn country requires that the outside world intervene

Recent Examples on the Web

With several months left to go until Game of Thrones returns, the archives of drone videos also offer a meditative respite from the blood and carnage of the actual show. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "This Game of Thrones aerial drone video collection will get you through winter," 2 Dec. 2018 This is what survivors now have to live with: the memories of massacres barely ended and the fear of carnage just over the horizon. Nick Turse, Teen Vogue, "The Democratic Republic of Congo Has Humanitarian Crises Leaving Millions of Children In Danger," 14 Nov. 2018 My research in recent years has taken me to a number of countries that have managed to recover from some of the world’s worst carnage. Rachel Kleinfeld, WSJ, "The Violence Driving Migration Isn’t Just Gangs," 9 Nov. 2018 Another 869 people were injured, nearly half of them by gunfire or shrapnel, on top of countless others carrying the mental anguish that comes from living through the harrowing carnage and the confusion that came with the attack. Mark Berman, The Seattle Times, "One year later, mystery of Las Vegas massacre remains," 1 Oct. 2018 The movie lands in select theaters November 30 before expanding nationwide on December 7, just in time to bring a taste of cheeky carnage to the holiday season. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "New trailer for Anna and the Apocalypse promises undead slaying for holidays," 5 Sep. 2018 This story has everything: cloven hooves on the run, a major urban city, an air of mystery—and all without animal carnage or service interruptions? Cady Drell, Marie Claire, "This Story of Two Runaway Goats Has a Ridiculously Happy Ending," 21 Aug. 2018 In the Caribbean, sargassum has pushed tourists off the beaches, washing up on shores and leaving behind thousands of pounds of algal carnage. Jacob Sweet, miamiherald, "Lots of sun, and brown slimy seaweed, in the forecast for South Florida beaches," 3 July 2018 Despite the seemingly endless carnage in the news, our world is vastly safer today than ever before. Rachel Kleinfeld, WSJ, "The Violence Driving Migration Isn’t Just Gangs," 9 Nov. 2018

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

1614, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for carnage

French, from Medieval Latin carnaticum tribute consisting of animals or meat, from Latin carn-, caro — see carnal

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Learn More about carnage

Dictionary Entries near carnage

car movement





carnal abuse


Statistics for carnage

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for carnage

The first known use of carnage was in 1614

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More Definitions for carnage



English Language Learners Definition of carnage

: the killing of many people


car·​nage | \ˈkär-nij \

Kids Definition of carnage

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More from Merriam-Webster on carnage

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for carnage

Spanish Central: Translation of carnage

Nglish: Translation of carnage for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of carnage for Arabic Speakers

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