ed·​i·​fice ˈe-də-fəs How to pronounce edifice (audio)
: building
especially : a large or massive structure
: a large abstract structure
holds together the social edificeR. H. Tawney

Examples of edifice in a Sentence

a magnificent edifice with a domed ceiling the U.S. Capitol is one of our nation's most impressive edifices
Recent Examples on the Web The edifice underwent a $275 million renovation after the journalism museum shuttered in 2019. Nick Anderson, Washington Post, 6 Oct. 2023 It had been built as a Masonic Temple, but by 1969 that edifice of secrecy had become the coolest rock and roll club and venue in town, the Rock Pile. Geddy Lee, Rolling Stone, 14 Nov. 2023 The agency’s current headquarters at the J. Edgar Hoover building, a hulking edifice that occupies an entire block of prime real estate in downtown Washington, is falling apart and doesn’t meet the agency’s security requirements. Erin Cox, Washington Post, 11 Nov. 2023 Vegas should enjoy this new item now as a similar edifice will soon be built in East London. Lisa Kaas Boyle, Los Angeles Times, 29 Sep. 2023 In 1925, his government purchased a new Embassy in London, a four-story mid-Victorian edifice at Princes Gate, across Kensington Road from Hyde Park, near the Royal Albert Hall. Steve Coll, The New Yorker, 13 Aug. 2023 The exchange’s broad edifice includes two surprising and potentially shaky pillars. Shawn Tully, Fortune, 28 Mar. 2023 The unfinished edifice was regarded as an eyesore by those who encountered it day in and day out. Melinda Sheckells, The Hollywood Reporter, 18 Sep. 2023 The building, despite being just three levels, appears to resemble a four- or 4.5-story edifice, thanks to the towering 22-foot ceilings of each unit. Megan Johnson, BostonGlobe.com, 30 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'edifice.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin aedificium, from aedificare

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of edifice was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near edifice

Cite this Entry

“Edifice.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/edifice. Accessed 10 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


ed·​i·​fice ˈed-ə-fəs How to pronounce edifice (audio)
: building sense 1
especially : a large or impressive building (as a church)

More from Merriam-Webster on edifice

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