crusade

noun
cru·​sade | \krü-ˈsād \

Definition of crusade 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 capitalized : any of the military expeditions undertaken by Christian powers in the 11th, 12th, and 13th centuries to win the Holy Land from the Muslims

2 : a remedial enterprise undertaken with zeal and enthusiasm a crusade against drunk driving

crusade

verb
crusaded; crusading

Definition of crusade (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to engage in a crusade

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from crusade

Verb

crusader noun

Did You Know?

In 1095, when Palestinian lands were held by Muslims, Pope Urban II exhorted Christians to reclaim the Holy Sepulchre and other venerated sites. Those who responded wore crosses of cloth on their breasts to identify themselves as soldiers in Christ’s army. Medieval French words for such holy wars were croisement, croiserie, croisée, and croisade, all derivatives of crois, meaning “cross.” In the 18th century, long after the crusades themselves had ceased, English borrowed both French croisade and the Spanish cruzado (likewise formed from a word meaning “cross”), blending the two to produce crusade.

Examples of crusade in a Sentence

Noun

a grassroots crusade for spending more money on our public schools

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

His crusade for civility has been a lot of talk and little action. Dylan Scott, Vox, "Brett Kavanaugh is Jeff Flake’s most important test," 3 Oct. 2018 Her goal, to cure blindness, is lofty, and her crusade is personal. Christina Rexrode, WSJ, "The Woman Who Wants Wall Street to Fund a Cure for Blindness," 18 Aug. 2018 Marshall’s successful decadeslong crusade to keep blacks out of the NFL, the assimilation of the rival All-America Football Conference in the late 1940s, the lucrative partnership with TV. Edward Kosner, WSJ, "‘The League’ Review: Single Wing and a Prayer," 6 Nov. 2018 The previous game centered on a plague of children born without souls in the wake of a bloody crusade. Steven Strom, Ars Technica, "Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire," 4 June 2018 Over the next 27 years, that effort has turned into a crusade to save and resurrect the area’s native ecosystem. Frank Vaisvilas, Daily Southtown, "Will County honors Mokena woman for decades of battle against forest preserve invaders," 2 May 2018 Back in Washington, Nadine and Isaac’s (Cynthia Addai-Robinson, Omar Epps) crusade to shut down Atlas forces them to team up with Carlita (guest star Felisha Terrell), a former Atlas agent who is now on the run. Ed Stockly, latimes.com, "Thursday's TV highlights: 'Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger' on Freeform," 5 July 2018 And some long-standing crusades, such as the push for tighter gun laws, have a new face — the teens from Parkland, Florida, who organized a massive rally in Washington, D.C., in April. Washington Post, "Today’s protests: Many voices, social media, not 1 leader," 22 June 2018 Ironically, Mitchell, who has led the anti-Bush crusade, didn't even vote Trump. NBC News, "A Bush is running in a Trump-love primary and the race is getting ugly," 20 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Brazil needs more hardworking teachers and honest school principals, dedicated municipal workers, crusading public-health officials, and incorruptible judges. Walter Russell Mead, WSJ, "Brazil Is Moving Its Embassy to Jerusalem," 5 Nov. 2018 The pattern has been influenced by where candidates put their resources, their regional ties, their endorsements and the role of conservative talk radio in Milwaukee, which crusaded for Walker in 2010 and against Trump in 2016. Craig Gilbert, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "GOP senate primary in Wisconsin already reflects north-south divide within party," 13 July 2018 Most of your career has been spent crusading against the corporate world. Tj Kliebhan, Chicago Reader, "Do This / Music Jeff Rosenstock talks about his notorious Pitchfork set and how he’s sticking to his DIY punk principles," 24 Apr. 2018 Whether in the United States or even the Soviet Union, their proper ethic was realistic, conservative and prudent, more wary of going to war than their reckless or crusading civilian masters. Gary J. Bass, New York Times, "Should We Worry About Trump’s Fawning Admiration of the Military?," 29 June 2018 For more than 20 years, ministers have played an invaluable role in crusading against street violence in the city. Adrian Walker, BostonGlobe.com, "Shaun Harrison, fraud and would-be assassin, was a master manipulator of trust," 4 June 2018 His books have the Dead Girl story’s typical investigator with a good-guy complex, the crusading investigative journalist Mikael Blomkvist, whose career is dedicated to revealing fraud and corruption in the financial industry. Alice Bolin, Longreads, "The Daughter as Detective," 26 June 2018 The crusading science journalist best known for his beef with Big Sugar is beat after four days of nutrition conference glad-handing. Megan Molteni, WIRED, "The Collapse of a $40 Million Nutrition Science Crusade," 18 June 2018 Petro, a former M-19 guerrilla who went on to become a crusading senator and the capital’s mayor, had been a poster child for rehabilitation. Jim Wyss, miamiherald, "Ivan Duque beats former guerrilla to win Colombia's presidential election," 17 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of crusade

Noun

circa 1708, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1732, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for crusade

Noun

blend of Middle French croisade & Spanish cruzada; both ultimately from Latin cruc-, crux cross

Verb

see crusade entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about crusade

Dictionary Entries near crusade

crural

cruro-

crus

crusade

crusader

crusado

cruse

Statistics for crusade

Last Updated

4 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for crusade

The first known use of crusade was circa 1708

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for crusade

crusade

noun

English Language Learners Definition of crusade

 (Entry 1 of 2)

Crusade : any one of the wars that European Christian countries fought against Muslims in Palestine in the 11th, 12th, and 13th centuries

: a major effort to change something

crusade

verb

English Language Learners Definition of crusade (Entry 2 of 2)

: to take part in a major effort to change something

crusade

noun
cru·​sade | \krü-ˈsād \

Kids Definition of crusade

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 capitalized : one of the military expeditions made by Christian countries in the eleventh, twelfth, and thirteenth centuries to recover the Holy Land from the Muslims

2 : a campaign to get things changed for the better a crusade against litter

crusade

verb
crusaded; crusading

Kids Definition of crusade (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to take part in a medieval military expedition to recover the Holy Land

2 : to take part in a campaign to make things better

Other Words from crusade

crusader \krü-​ˈsā-​dər \ noun

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on crusade

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with crusade

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for crusade

Spanish Central: Translation of crusade

Nglish: Translation of crusade for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of crusade for Arabic Speakers

Comments on crusade

What made you want to look up crusade? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a nest or breeding place

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Late Autumn 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • frosted-autumn-leaves
  • Which is a synonym of yahoo?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!