com·​mand·​ment | \ kə-ˈman(d)-mənt How to pronounce commandment (audio) \

Definition of commandment

1 : the act or power of commanding
2 : something that is commanded especially : one of the biblical Ten Commandments

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Examples of commandment in a Sentence

the Ten Commandments in the Bible the boss left behind a list of commandments for running the office while he was away
Recent Examples on the Web In Matthew 22:36-40, we are given the greatest two commandments. Mark Heim |, al, "Here are Alabama, Auburn, SEC teams’ responses to civil unrest, racial injustice," 1 June 2020 Studying the Hebrew scriptures, or Torah, is a commandment and a duty in Judaism. Joyce Dalsheim, The Conversation, "Jewish history explains why some ultra-Orthodox communities defy coronavirus restrictions," 27 Apr. 2020 His company established the template of the editor as a heroic, godlike figure casting down commandments from a print Mount Olympus, a status that continued after Nast’s death through the twentieth century. Kyle Chayka, The New Republic, "The Transformation of Condé Nast," 21 Oct. 2019 There’s a Biblical commandment, Exodus 12:15, to rid your home of bread for Passover. Molly Crabapple, The New York Review of Books, "Passover 2020: Why Is This Year Different From All Other Years?," 7 Apr. 2020 No commandments are technically broken here, although there may be some bending of the first, the one about having no other gods, and possibly the one about keeping the Sabbath holy, what with matinees and all. Leslie Felperin, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Prince of Egypt': Theater Review," 26 Feb. 2020 Khan declares in her first commandment, speaking with icy cool atop a frigid dub-reggae groove. Kenneth Partridge, Billboard, "The Specials Talk Reunion Album & Recording With Viral Activist Saffiyah Khan," 22 Jan. 2019 The issue of breast-feeding in public is especially sensitive in Mormon spaces, where motherhood is considered a woman’s highest calling and modesty is also a commandment. Sarah Pulliam Bailey,, "Mormon women press Brigham Young University to allow breast-feeding at women’s conference," 8 Feb. 2020 Fans can also create their own dating commandments based on the songs through an interactive mobile experience. Joey Guerra, Houston Chronicle, "Destiny's Child album 'The Writing's on the Wall' is still a banger 20 years later," 26 July 2019

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for commandment

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

15 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

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

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More Definitions for commandment


How to pronounce commandment (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of commandment

: an important rule given by God that tells people how to behave


com·​mand·​ment | \ kə-ˈmand-mənt How to pronounce commandment (audio) \

Kids Definition of commandment

1 : something given as a command
2 : one of ten rules given by God that are mentioned in the Bible

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