death sentence


Definition of death sentence

1 : a sentence condemning a convicted defendant to death
2 : an affliction or a situation that is considered to be fatal also : a prognosis of death

Examples of death sentence in a Sentence

She received a death sentence for the murders.

Recent Examples on the Web

Terminating humanitarian protection for immigrants with life-threatening health conditions is a death sentence. Travis Andersen,, "Mass. groups sue to stop policy change that would deport families of seriously ill children," 5 Sep. 2019 Extraordinary scientific advances — as well as tax breaks and other government incentives for developing drugs for rare diseases — have spawned treatments, and even cures, for illnesses that were once a death sentence. New York Times, "The $6 Million Drug Claim," 25 Aug. 2019 For the past two years, Iraqi-American Christian leaders in Michigan have said that deporting Chaldeans back to Iraq would be a virtual death sentence. Niraj Warikoo, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan man with diabetes dies in Iraq after ICE deported him," 8 Aug. 2019 Consuming too much plastic can be a death sentence for birds, like the one that was found with 274 pieces of plastic trash in its tummy. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Eating Even One Piece of Plastic Has Health Consequences for Baby Seabirds," 5 Aug. 2019 An earthquake, even a big one, doesn’t have to be a death sentence., "Earthquake preparedness: What to do - wherever you are - when the earth starts shaking," 12 July 2019 The distinction is important; the pit-mix designation could be a death sentence. Krista Kafer, The Denver Post, "Kafer: Will Aurora be the next Colorado city to ditch its unfair breed ban?," 11 July 2019 While several of the 2020 candidates will not be appearing on the debate stage this week, these polls are not necessarily a death sentence. Natasha Bach, Fortune, "These Are the Top-Polling Democratic Candidates," 25 June 2019 Combined with the suit’s high health, stomp ability, and fast-firing combat shotgun, facing off against one is all but a death sentence, save for rare situations in which a group of players can shred enough of its health fast enough to avoid defeat. Nick Statt, The Verge, "Fortnite’s next tournament will also be its most controversial, thanks to mech suits," 16 Aug. 2019

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

1655, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for death sentence

Last Updated

1 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for death sentence

The first known use of death sentence was in 1655

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More Definitions for death sentence

death sentence


English Language Learners Definition of death sentence

: the decision by a court of law that the punishment for someone's crime will be death
: something (such as a disease) that is sure to cause death
: an act or event that ends something permanently

death sentence

Legal Definition of death sentence

see sentence

More from Merriam-Webster on death sentence

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with death sentence

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