dignity

noun
dig·​ni·​ty | \ ˈdig-nə-tē How to pronounce dignity (audio) \
plural dignities

Definition of dignity

1 : formal reserve or seriousness of manner, appearance, or language
2 : the quality or state of being worthy, honored, or esteemed
3a : high rank, office, or position
b : a legal title of nobility or honor
4 archaic : dignitary

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Examples of dignity in a Sentence

Jenny Daggers links feminist critiques and interreligious dialogue, arguing that our failure to treat people of other traditions with dignity matches in deed and rhetoric our inability to see that women are full and equal members of the community. — Francis X. Clooney, Commonweal, 11 Sept. 2009 When King spoke about the racist past, he gloried in black people beating the odds to win equal rights by arming "ourselves with dignity and self-respect." — Juan Williams, Wall Street Journal, 4 Apr. 2008 The period just after the Revolutionary War (1780-1820) was a time to project hard-won dignity, not show off. Federal interiors featured muted wall colors … and delicately carved or inlaid decoration. — Kelly Beamon, This Old House, March 2008 Roger was beaming. His creased fat face literally shone with pleasure, which, for the sake of dignity, he struggled to contain. — Alice Adams, The Story and Its Writer, 1987 Every speaker tries to create a love affair with his or her audience. But when the phenomenon called Maya Angelou takes the lectern at Pensacola (Florida) Junior College, she does not so much speak to the audience as "embrace" it. She sings, reads verse, thunders oratorically, even dances. Standing a majestic six feet tall and gifted with a resonant voice and … dignity, she is a poet, preacher, performer extraordinaire. — Cheryl McCall, People, 8 Mar. 1982 She showed dignity in defeat. The ceremony was conducted with great dignity. Theirs is a country that cherishes freedom and human dignity.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Long celebrated for his portrait work, Parks rendered the American working class with thrilling dignity; taking especially moving pictures of African Americans. Marley Marius, Vogue, "From Sally Mann to Jacopo Tintoretto, 7 Art Exhibitions You Won't Want to Miss This Spring," 1 Mar. 2019 Photographer Allan Barnes shares how the train station is one of the buildings that drew him to his art form, not to revel in destruction, but to preserve images of dignity against all odds. Julie Hinds, Detroit Free Press, "'Detroit: Comeback City' documentary is personal, and that's a good thing," 1 July 2018 Quiet dignity lost, a Nisei gardener slipped away in the echo with the wind and the light. Hartford Courant, courant.com, "The Poems Of Aaron Caycedo-Kimura: Honoring Ones Parents," 13 June 2018 And he was known for wielding his power with a quiet dignity. George Schroeder, USA TODAY, "Longtime SEC commissioner Mike Slive dies at 77," 16 May 2018 Sports have a dignity that defies those who want to see games turning on a twist of fate. The Christian Science Monitor, "Mixing sports and sports gambling is no game," 14 May 2018 Davis finds both a quiet dignity and a ready comic straight man in Kahneman’s prevailing gloom. Lily Janiak, San Francisco Chronicle, "Glass half empty (or is it half full) in the Marsh’s ‘Two Minds’," 7 May 2018 In the meantime, the Pentagon would continue to treat transgender troops with dignity and respect, Mattis said in a memo. Dan Lamothe, The Seattle Times, "Supreme Court lets Trump’s restrictions on transgender troops take effect," 22 Jan. 2019 Running after someone who doesn't want to be caught could damage her dignity — and hurt her chances of finding a partner. Jenna Birch, Woman's Day, "11 Love Lessons Every Mother Should Teach Her Daughter," 23 Jan. 2019

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for dignity

Middle English dignete, from Anglo-French digneté, from Latin dignitat-, dignitas, from dignus

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Statistics for dignity

Last Updated

4 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dignity

The first known use of dignity was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for dignity

dignity

noun

English Language Learners Definition of dignity

: a way of appearing or behaving that suggests seriousness and self-control
: the quality of being worthy of honor or respect

dignity

noun
dig·​ni·​ty | \ ˈdig-nə-tē How to pronounce dignity (audio) \
plural dignities

Kids Definition of dignity

1 : the quality or state of being worthy of honor and respect He believes in the dignity of all people.
2 : a serious and admirable look or way of behaving

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More from Merriam-Webster on dignity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for dignity

Spanish Central: Translation of dignity

Nglish: Translation of dignity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dignity for Arabic Speakers

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