church·​yard | \ ˈchərch-ˌyärd How to pronounce churchyard (audio) \

Definition of churchyard

: a yard that belongs to a church and is often used as a burial ground

Examples of churchyard in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web After all, this city inspired author Edgar Allan Poe, whose grave sits in old churchyard near the University of Maryland Medical Center. Christina Tkacik,, 21 Oct. 2021 The dead were then buried in the local churchyard or in family plots on the back forty of the farm. Lisa Wells, Harper's Magazine, 28 Sep. 2021 But for the throngs of Haitians who crammed into this churchyard in recent weeks – some of the 19,000 fleeing warzone-like conditions across swaths of the capital — his killing is really just one more death. Washington Post, 23 July 2021 Parting obediently to make way, the crowd followed them over the lawn and out onto the winding dirt road that led to the churchyard., 9 July 2021 The research also documented plague victims who were buried in mass graves at St. Bene’t’s churchyard in Cambridge, reports BBC News. Livia Gershon, Smithsonian Magazine, 22 June 2021 He was buried in a churchyard in the English village of Milford on Sea, just a few dozen miles from Rode, and his gravestone was decorated with coral skeletons from the Great Barrier Reef. Michelle Nijhuis, The Atlantic, 16 June 2021 Thirty-four identical white metal crosses, crooked and misaligned, remain in the churchyard that is more frequently visited by elk, judging from the droppings in the grass, than humans these days. Brian Maffly, The Salt Lake Tribune, 15 Apr. 2021 Some, like the Tollund Man, were initially assumed to be murder victims, and many were reburied in churchyards. Robert Rubsam, New York Times, 24 Mar. 2020

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

12th century, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for churchyard

Time Traveler

The first known use of churchyard was in the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near churchyard



churchyard beetle

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Cite this Entry

“Churchyard.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for churchyard



English Language Learners Definition of churchyard

: a piece of land that belongs to and is usually close to a church and that is often used as a place to bury people


church·​yard | \ ˈchərch-ˌyärd How to pronounce churchyard (audio) \

Kids Definition of churchyard

: an area of land that belongs to and usually surrounds a church and that is often used as a burial ground

More from Merriam-Webster on churchyard

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for churchyard

Nglish: Translation of churchyard for Spanish Speakers


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