electric chair


Definition of electric chair

1 : a chair used in legal electrocution
2 : the penalty of death by electrocution

Examples of electric chair in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In Tennessee, condemned inmates whose crimes occurred before 1999 can opt for the electric chair. CBS News, "Tennessee executes inmate in electric chair for killing mother and daughter in 1986," 15 Aug. 2019 In 2018, Tennessee used the electric chair for two executions. Steve Almasy And Jamiel Lynch, CNN, "Tennessee executes a double murderer by electric chair," 15 Aug. 2019 Among the items on display: Old Sparky, the electric chair used at the Ohio Penitentiary in Columbus from 1897 to 1963. Susan Glaser, cleveland.com, "‘Shawshank’ 25th anniversary: How movie redeemed Mansfield’s notorious Ohio State Reformatory," 21 July 2019 Tennessee last week recalled its electric chair to service for the first time since 2007 to execute inmate Edmund Zagorski, who requested electrocution out of fear that lethal injection would be more painful. Jess Bravin, WSJ, "Kavanaugh Questions Death-Penalty Method in Missouri Case," 6 Nov. 2018 There’s a sizzling dance set around an electric chair. Christopher Arnott, courant.com, "Review: 'The Scottsboro Boys’ a searing, spirited, well-told tale of racial injustice at Playhouse on Park," 1 July 2019 Following the jury’s guilty verdict, Allen notched another first: No woman had ever sentenced a man to the electric chair. Andrea Simakis, cleveland.com, "Before RBG, a Cleveland judge made history; it’s time to recognize Unstoppable Florence Allen: Andrea Simakis," 30 June 2019 Neelley was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to die in Alabama's electric chair, but Alabama Gov. Fob James commuted Neelley's death sentence to life in 1999. Kim Chandler, Fox News, "No parole for woman in Georgia teen's slaying in Alabama," 23 May 2018 Justice Gorsuch wrote, observing America’s progress from the gallows to the gas chamber, the electric chair to the intravenous drip. Jess Bravin, WSJ, "Supreme Court Rejects Ailing Killer’s Claim That Lethal Injection Will Be Too Painful," 1 Apr. 2019

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

1883, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for electric chair

Last Updated

4 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for electric chair

The first known use of electric chair was in 1883

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More Definitions for electric chair

electric chair


English Language Learners Definition of electric chair

: a special chair in which a criminal who has been sentenced to death is killed by using a strong electric current

electric chair

elec·​tric chair

Legal Definition of electric chair

1 : a chair used in performing a legal electrocution
2 : the penalty of death by electrocution

More from Merriam-Webster on electric chair

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with electric chair

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about electric chair

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