fi·​nal·​i·​ty | \ fī-ˈna-lə-tē How to pronounce finality (audio) , fə- \
plural finalities

Definition of finality

1a : the character or condition of being final, settled, irrevocable, or complete
b : the condition of being at an ultimate point especially of development or authority
2 : something final especially : a fundamental fact, action, or belief

Examples of finality in a Sentence

“It won't work,” he said, with an air of finality.
Recent Examples on the Web The awful finality of death leaves so much unresolved. Amira Rose Davis, The New Republic, "A Legacy of Incoherence," 1 Feb. 2020 Because every episode before last week's offered a version of death that felt so much like life, the shift to finality and the unknown feels a bit jarring and overwhelmingly sad. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, "Review: The tear-jerking 'Good Place' series finale stays far away from the Bad Place," 31 Jan. 2020 And the damage that those biases can do when supposedly backed by the finality of science is still incredibly real. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Superior pinpoints racism in science: Naive scientists plus strategic racists," 4 Jan. 2020 Composer Brian Reitzell and sound designer Robert Mackenzie also make invaluable contributions, and there's brilliantly creepy prosthetics work in the latter half as family drama cedes the way with grim finality to horror. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Relic': Film Review | Sundance 2020," 27 Jan. 2020 Despite overwhelming evidence for the relative safety of air travel over other forms of transport, the prospect of a plane crash, in its completeness and finality, conjures a deep level of anxiety. The Economist, "Death in the Alps," 20 Dec. 2019 As he was being carried in a sheet a block up the street to an ambulance, the blazing building collapsed into itself with a sudden, shocking finality., "The rescue that failed — disorganization, empty hydrants killed Janet Ray," 11 Oct. 2019 As a result, those probate claims against the estate were dismissed with finality; the appeals court ruling does not affect them. Maria Puente, USA TODAY, "Michael Jackson accusers win OK to take their abuse allegations to civil trial," 6 Jan. 2020 Having their backs pinned to the wall forces the Eagles to come face-to-face with the finality in front of them., "For Kobay White and BC, it’s bowl or bust - The Boston Globe," 29 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'finality.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of finality

1833, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for finality

probably borrowed from French finalité, from final final entry 1 + -ité -ity

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about finality

Time Traveler for finality

Time Traveler

The first known use of finality was in 1833

See more words from the same year

Statistics for finality

Last Updated

17 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Finality.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Feb. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for finality


How to pronounce finality (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of finality

: the quality or state of being final or finished and not able to be changed


fi·​nal·​i·​ty | \ fī-ˈna-lə-tē How to pronounce finality (audio) \

Kids Definition of finality

: the condition of being final or complete the finality of the decision


fi·​nal·​i·​ty | \ fī-ˈna-lə-tē, fə- How to pronounce finality (audio) \

Legal Definition of finality

1 : the state or condition of being final
2 : the principle that appeals may only be taken from final orders or judgments

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on finality

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with finality

Spanish Central: Translation of finality

Nglish: Translation of finality for Spanish Speakers

Comments on finality

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


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!