des·ti·ny | \ ˈdes-tə-nē \
plural destinies

Definition of destiny 

1 : something to which a person or thing is destined : fortune wants to control his own destiny

2 : a predetermined course of events often held to be an irresistible power or agency felt that destiny would determine their future

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Choose the Right Synonym for destiny

fate, destiny, lot, portion, doom mean a predetermined state or end. fate implies an inevitable and usually an adverse outcome. the fate of the submarine is unknown destiny implies something foreordained and often suggests a great or noble course or end. the country's destiny to be a model of liberty to the world lot and portion imply a distribution by fate or destiny, lot suggesting blind chance it was her lot to die childless , portion implying the apportioning of good and evil. remorse was his daily portion doom distinctly implies a grim or calamitous fate. if the rebellion fails, his doom is certain

Examples of destiny in a Sentence

They believed it was their destiny to be together. motivated by a sense of destiny

Recent Examples on the Web

But this France team has an air of destiny about it, much like the legendary squad that won it all 20 years ago on home turf. Ed Barkowitz,, "Atlantic City bookies offer odds and props for Sunday's World Cup final between France and Croatia," 13 July 2018 Then again, for the best player in the world, perhaps that’s always the bargain: destiny fulfilled or another June root canal. Lee Jenkins,, "Inside Decision 3.0: LeBron James Follows in the Footsteps of Legends," 1 July 2018 Mediocrity appears to be the Ravens’ destiny again in 2018 because Newsome and Harbaugh have too many holes to cover up in a year. Mike Preston,, "Mike Preston: Despite free agency moves, Ravens still have gaping holes," 20 Mar. 2018 Hearing detailed, insightful narratives from readers about living with dementia made me both fear my future and begin to seriously question whether I was headed toward the same destiny. Kent Pollock, sacbee, "His memory loss diagnosis may change. So he's decided to just enjoy each day. | The Sacramento Bee," 20 Mar. 2018 Debtor nations that borrow from others to remain solvent eventually lose power to control their own destinies. WSJ, "Boosting Industry Isn’t Trump’s Sole Trade Goal," 11 July 2018 With two league matches left, Sage Hill (7-4, 5-1 in league) moved ahead of St. Margaret's (8-3, 3-2) and controls its own destiny. Matt Szabo,, "Sage Hill boys' tennis edges rival St. Margaret's, controls own destiny in Academy League," 14 Apr. 2018 Philadelphia controls its own destiny ahead of a home game against Milwaukee. Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY, "What Eastern Conference Playoff race looks like on final day of regular season," 11 Apr. 2018 That’s why the Sixers want to control their own destiny by beating Milwaukee. Keith Pompey,, "Sixers beat Hawks for 15th straight win, turn attention to Milwaukee," 10 Apr. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for destiny

Middle English destinee, from Anglo-French, from feminine of destiné, past participle of destiner — see destine

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Statistics for destiny

Last Updated

11 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for destiny

The first known use of destiny was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for destiny



English Language Learners Definition of destiny

: what happens in the future : the things that someone or something will experience in the future

: a power that is believed to control what happens in the future


des·ti·ny | \ ˈde-stə-nē \
plural destinies

Kids Definition of destiny

1 : what happens to someone or something in the future You can decide your own destiny.

2 : the course of events believed to be controlled by a superhuman power

3 : a power that is believed to control the future

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More from Merriam-Webster on destiny

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for destiny

Spanish Central: Translation of destiny

Nglish: Translation of destiny for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of destiny for Arabic Speakers

Comments on destiny

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