commemorate

verb
com·​mem·​o·​rate | \ kə-ˈme-mə-ˌrāt How to pronounce commemorate (audio) \
commemorated; commemorating

Definition of commemorate

transitive verb

1 : to call to remembrance St. Andrew is commemorated on November 30.
2 : to mark by some ceremony or observation : observe commemorate an anniversary
3 : to serve as a memorial of a plaque that commemorates the battle

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Other Words from commemorate

commemorator \ kə-​ˈme-​mə-​ˌrā-​tər How to pronounce commemorator (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for commemorate

Synonyms

memorialize, monumentalize

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Choose the Right Synonym for commemorate

keep, observe, celebrate, commemorate mean to notice or honor a day, occasion, or deed. keep stresses the idea of not neglecting or violating. kept the Sabbath by refraining from work observe suggests marking the occasion by ceremonious performance. not all holidays are observed nationally celebrate suggests acknowledging an occasion by festivity. traditionally celebrates Thanksgiving with a huge dinner commemorate suggests that an occasion is marked by observances that remind one of the origin and significance of the event. commemorate Memorial Day with the laying of wreaths

Did You Know?

When you remember something, you are mindful of it. It's appropriate, therefore, that "commemorate" and other related memory-associated words (including "memorable," "memorial," "remember," and "memory" itself) come from the Latin root memor, meaning "mindful." Some distant older relatives are Old English "gemimor" ("well-known"), Greek mermēra ("care"), and Sanskrit "smarati" ("he remembers"). English speakers have been marking the memory of important events with "commemorate" since the late 16th century.

Examples of commemorate in a Sentence

The festival commemorates the town's founding. The plaque commemorates the battle that took place here 200 years ago. Each year on this date we commemorate our ancestors with a special ceremony.
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Recent Examples on the Web

First Lady Helen Taft and the Viscountess Chinda, the wife of the Japanese Ambassador, formally planted the first two Yoshino cherry trees at the Tidal Basin in 1912, where a plaque remains today to commemorate the event. Maggie Maloney, Town & Country, "How Cherry Blossoms Became the Most Celebrated Event of the Spring," 2 Apr. 2019 As fans take to social media to commemorate the Star Wars actor, her daughter, Billie Lourd shared her own touching tribute. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Billie Lourd Posted an Instagram Tribute on the Anniversary of Carrie Fisher’s Death," 27 Dec. 2018 The Journal Sentinel reported that Sandra had taken third place just two years earlier in a citywide competition with her essay commemorating the life of Martin Luther King. Ivan Moreno, The Seattle Times, "Man arrested after girl, 13, fatally shot in Milwaukee home," 20 Nov. 2018 Accordingly, let your gifts do double-duty this year: help them commemorate the milestone while celebrating the giving season. Vogue, "Get Ahead of the Registry: 20 Gift Ideas for Your Newly Engaged Friend," 16 Nov. 2018 Millie Bobby Brown took to Instagram to commemorate the start of production for season three with a selfie with executive producer Shawn Levy on Sunday, April 22. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "Here's Everything We Know About "Stranger Things" Season 3 So Far," 16 July 2018 The idea was to commemorate the 50th anniversaries of both the GT-R and Italdesign. Chris Woodyard, USA TODAY, "Nissan injects Italian design into sports car concept, creating GT-R50," 29 June 2018 Another way to commemorate a big day can be writing a letter to get some of your thoughts down. Alison Caporimo, Seventeen, "How To Deal With the Death Of a Parent," 14 Mar. 2019 To commemorate International Women's Day, Meghan Markle participated in a panel organized by the Queen's Commonwealth Trust. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Meghan Markle Wore a Black-and-White Dress for an International Women's Day Panel," 8 Mar. 2019

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

1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for commemorate

Latin commemoratus, past participle of commemorare, from com- + memorare to remind of, from memor mindful — more at memory

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Statistics for commemorate

Last Updated

11 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for commemorate

The first known use of commemorate was in 1599

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More Definitions for commemorate

commemorate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of commemorate

: to exist or be done in order to remind people of (an important event or person from the past)
: to do something special in order to remember and honor (an important event or person from the past)

commemorate

verb
com·​mem·​o·​rate | \ kə-ˈme-mə-ˌrāt How to pronounce commemorate (audio) \
commemorated; commemorating

Kids Definition of commemorate

1 : to observe with a ceremony commemorate an anniversary
2 : to serve as a memorial of The statue commemorates the battle.

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