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con·​se·​crate ˈkän(t)-sə-ˌkrāt How to pronounce consecrate (audio)
: dedicated to a sacred purpose


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consecrated; consecrating

transitive verb

: to induct (a person) into a permanent office with a religious rite
especially : to ordain to the office of bishop
: to make or declare sacred
especially : to devote irrevocably to the worship of God by a solemn ceremony
consecrate a church
: to effect the liturgical transubstantiation of (eucharistic bread and wine)
: to devote to a purpose with or as if with deep solemnity or dedication
: to make inviolable or venerable
principles consecrated by the weight of history
consecrative adjective
consecrator noun
consecratory adjective
Choose the Right Synonym for consecrate

devote, dedicate, consecrate, hallow mean to set apart for a special and often higher end.

devote is likely to imply compelling motives and often attachment to an objective.

devoted his evenings to study

dedicate implies solemn and exclusive devotion to a sacred or serious use or purpose.

dedicated her life to medical research

consecrate stresses investment with a solemn or sacred quality.

consecrate a church to the worship of God

hallow, often differing little from dedicate or consecrate, may distinctively imply an attribution of intrinsic sanctity.

battlegrounds hallowed by the blood of patriots

Examples of consecrate in a Sentence

Adjective the consecrate gold tablets which Joseph Smith claimed to have found Verb a philanthropist who consecrated his considerable fortune to an array of charitable causes plans to consecrate the altar in the new church with great ceremony
Recent Examples on the Web
Lana Del Rey doesn’t toy with signs—of American glamour and its decay, of female melancholia and racial desire—so much as consecrate them. Lauren Michele Jackson, The New Yorker, 28 Mar. 2023
Brown consecrated the Stanton native as Orange County’s second Latino auxiliary bishop in 2000 even though Soto had pleaded for leniency in the 1986 case of Andrew Christian Andersen, who faced at least 56 years in prison for molesting altar boys in Huntington Beach. Gustavo Arellano, Los Angeles Times, 18 Oct. 2023 At this year’s event, traditionally held on the last Sunday of July, 163 people attended services at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m., consecrating a ritual that, for many present, began with their great-great-grandparents. John Hanc, Smithsonian Magazine, 11 Aug. 2023 Last year, in a prayer for peace following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Francis corrected the 1984 omission and consecrated both Russia and Ukraine to Mary. Nicole Winfield,, 5 Aug. 2023 At what is traditionally the most sacred moment of the coronation ceremony, Charles will be anointed with holy oil consecrated at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. Karla Adam, Washington Post, 5 May 2023 Kernels were dried, ground, fried, grilled, baked, popped, boiled, consecrated, and hated. Oliver Munday, The Atlantic, 28 Aug. 2023 The memory of that other space consecrated her own roving tabernacle of Black performance. Carina Del Valle Schorske, New York Times, 23 Aug. 2023 Pope Francis consecrated both Ukraine and Russia shortly after the start of the war in 2022. Ines De La Cuetara, ABC News, 5 Aug. 2023 What is significant is your willingness to consecrate your union with a lie. Kwame Anthony Appiah, New York Times, 30 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'consecrate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Verb and Adjective

Middle English, from Latin consecratus, past participle of consecrare, from com- + sacrare to consecrate — more at sacred

First Known Use


14th century, in the meaning defined above


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of consecrate was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near consecrate

Cite this Entry

“Consecrate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


consecrated; consecrating
: to make or declare sacred : to set apart to the service of God
: to devote to a purpose in a very sincere manner


Middle English consecraten "to consecrate," derived from Latin consecrare "to make holy," from con-, com- "together" and sacrare "to consecrate," from sacr-, sacer "sacred" — related to sacred

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