concentration camp

noun

: a place where large numbers of people (such as prisoners of war, political prisoners, refugees, or the members of an ethnic or religious minority) are detained or confined under armed guard
used especially in reference to camps created by the Nazis in World War II for the internment and persecution of Jews and other prisoners
The Nazi soldiers hauled [Mordechai] Strigler off to a concentration camp, and carved swastikas into his cheeks and forehead with a razor blade. Over the next five years, he was sent from one concentration camp or slave-labor camp to another.David RemnickShe ended up dying in a concentration camp, just a few months before she would have been liberated.Marilyn ReynoldsThe V2 killed thousands of British civilians while 20,000 concentration camp inmates died as slave labourers during its manufacture in the closing stages of the second world war.Anna Tomforde et al.
see also death camp

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Some Jewish groups criticized the creative liberties the series took with Holocaust history, including its depiction of a fictional chess game in which the pieces were prisoners in a concentration camp. Robert Ito, New York Times, 12 Jan. 2023 Her earliest effort in this arena was for her husband’s grandmother, who had lost her mother in a concentration camp. Deepti Hajela, Chicago Tribune, 30 Nov. 2022 Her earliest effort in this arena was for her husband’s grandmother, who had lost her mother in a concentration camp. Deepti Hajela, The Christian Science Monitor, 30 Nov. 2022 Her earliest effort in this arena was for her husband's grandmother, who had lost her mother in a concentration camp. Deepti Hajela, ajc, 30 Nov. 2022 His opposition to antisemitism and his ban on the Nazi salute at Schloss Elmau would have landed most people in a concentration camp — but Müller’s unwavering support for Hitler left Nazi officials with a dilemma. Kate Brady, Washington Post, 26 June 2022 In early November 1942, Jonas and her mother were deported to the Theresienstadt concentration camp in Czechoslovakia. New York Times, 19 Aug. 2022 An additional part of the showcase is a virtual reality experience where attendees wear headsets and visit a real-life concentration camp. Roxanne De La Rosa, The Arizona Republic, 7 Nov. 2022 When Amon Göth, a concentration camp commandant who had a reputation for killing Jewish prisoners daily, came to inspect the factory camp, an internee was tardy in returning to his barracks from the latrine. Frederick N. Rasmussen, Baltimore Sun, 3 Nov. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'concentration camp.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1901, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of concentration camp was in 1901

Dictionary Entries Near concentration camp

Cite this Entry

“Concentration camp.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/concentration%20camp. Accessed 26 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition

concentration camp

noun
: a camp where persons (as prisoners of war, political prisoners, or refugees) are detained

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