ed·​i·​fy·​ing | \ ˈe-də-ˌfī-iŋ How to pronounce edifying (audio) \

Definition of edifying

: instructive or informative in a way that improves the mind or character an edifying discussion Much of Mr. Kernan's scholarship is impressive, and many of his thoughts on the history of language and literature are quite edifying.— Joe Queenan

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Other Words from edifying

edifyingly adverb

Examples of edifying in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

With a querying student often at his side, Conway settles either on a cluster of couches in the main room or a window alcove just outside the fray in the hallway, furnished with two armchairs facing a blackboard — a very edifying nook. Quanta Magazine, "A Life in Games," 28 Aug. 2015 Cold War, the remarkable new film by Paweł Pawlikowski, opens in the year of Polska YMCA’s demise, and centers on an organization that the Polish authorities hoped would furnish the nation’s youth with a more edifying cultural diet. Giles Harvey, Harper's magazine, "Home Truths," 10 Jan. 2019 Some point to obvious, albeit less edifying, explanations. Jack Wertheimer, WSJ, "Why Go to Synagogue Once a Year?," 6 Sep. 2018 Europe is girding for the return of U.S. nuclear sanctions on Iran next month, and the spectacle in Brussels isn’t exactly edifying. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Europe’s Iran Options," 25 July 2018 The brilliant white interior with mile-high ceilings makes a naturally edifying setting for hearing lectures, seeing exhibitions, or browsing French books. Isa Tousignant, Condé Nast Traveler, "3 Best Day Trips From Montreal," 17 Aug. 2018 But what does-though a thousand times more generous-isn't a whole lot more edifying. Tony Adler, Chicago Reader, "The members of Support Group for Men don’t get eviscerated, but what does happen isn’t much more edifying," 2 July 2018 Usually, my friends, over my objections, preferred this to playing ball—or to other popular, if less edifying, neighborhood pursuits, such as tearing hood ornaments off parked cars. Nick Paumgarten, The New Yorker, "How Fortnite Captured Teens’ Hearts and Minds," 14 May 2018 Hearing his explanations for them is all the more edifying. Adam Lashinsky, Fortune, "Coal Cloud, VW Charge, Twitter Passwords: CEO Daily for May 4, 2018," 4 May 2018

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

1526, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for edifying

Last Updated

1 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for edifying

The first known use of edifying was in 1526

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More from Merriam-Webster on edifying

Nglish: Translation of edifying for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of edifying for Arabic Speakers

Comments on edifying

What made you want to look up edifying? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


something desired as essential

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