de·​struc·​tion | \ di-ˈstrək-shən How to pronounce destruction (audio) \

Definition of destruction

1 : the state or fact of being destroyed : ruin scenes of death and destruction the destruction of their careers
2 : the action or process of destroying something the destruction of the building
3 : a destroying agency Alcohol will be his destruction.

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Examples of destruction in a Sentence

War results in death and widespread destruction. We are trying to save the building from destruction.
Recent Examples on the Web Days of rainfall, followed by the failure of both the Edenville and Sanford dams, led to the evacuation of 10,000 Michiganders and the destruction of homes, roadways and bridges. Frank Witsil, Detroit Free Press, "Whitmer expands mid-Michigan flood disaster area, adds Iosco County," 27 May 2020 Isaiah Joseph Howard, 19, was detained briefly at the Santa Rita Jail in Dublin on suspicion of accessory to murder, and concealment or destruction of evidence. Fox News, "Mourning a murder and solving a murder in the age of coronavirus: A California family’s hunt for answers," 19 May 2020 Unrestricted immigration, on the other hand, moves people to the food, thus speeding up the destruction of the environment of the rich countries. Aaron Timms, The New Republic, "Making Life Cheap," 18 May 2020 Societies can take numerous steps to prevent the destruction. The Editors, Scientific American, "Stopping Deforestation Can Prevent Pandemics," 12 May 2020 In 2008, Durham took on a sensitive and controversial investigation into the actions taken by members of the U.S. government when Mukasey appointed him special prosecutor to look into the CIA’s destruction of tapes of detainee interrogations. Jerry Dunleavy, Washington Examiner, "‘Full throttle’: John Durham’s Russia team is stacked with veteran investigators," 12 May 2020 Over the year, the Red Army marched toward Berlin, intent on the destruction of Nazi Germany. National Geographic, "See the Full Archive," 7 May 2020 If karma exists in the film industry amid the destruction COVID-19 continues to unleash, Still Wylde will become a full-length feature in the next few years. Nathan Mattise, Ars Technica, "SXSW on Amazon—French electronica, Dark Web subcultures, and two great shorts," 2 May 2020 Some such collection is necessary for persons who live far from postal service, including on Native American reservations, but the practice should be limited to avoid opportunities for significant tampering with or destruction of ballots. David Cole, The New York Review of Books, "Why We Need Postal Democracy," 30 Apr. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for destruction

Middle English destruccioun, from Anglo-French destruction, from Latin destruction-, destructio, from destruere — see destroy

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Time Traveler for destruction

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for destruction

Last Updated

30 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Destruction.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jun. 2020.

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How to pronounce destruction (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of destruction

: the act or process of damaging something so badly that it no longer exists or cannot be repaired : the act or process of destroying something


de·​struc·​tion | \ di-ˈstrək-shən How to pronounce destruction (audio) \

Kids Definition of destruction

1 : the act or process of killing, ruining, or putting an end to something Destruction of the old building is underway.
2 : the state or fact of being killed, ruined, or brought to an end Destruction of the animal's habitat nearly caused its extinction.

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