flag·​el·​la·​tion | \ ˌfla-jə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce flagellation (audio) \

Definition of flagellation

: the act or practice of flagellating especially : the practice of a flagellant

Examples of flagellation in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Years of experience had conditioned me to expect self-flagellation after such indulgences. Washington Post, "Breast-feeding is helping me face my decades-long struggle with hating my body," 14 Oct. 2019 For their purposes, Thunberg isn’t a precocious advocate for a new way of thinking about society, but an instrument of performative self-flagellation. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry Greta Thunberg," 25 Sep. 2019 The day is usually marked by self-flagellation rituals. Safwat Zargar, Quartz India, "Cut off from hospitals, Kashmiri protesters are treated by amateurs with cycle spokes," 25 Sep. 2019 At a spiritual retreat organized by the school, the boys have fun acting out a flagellation depicted in a painting in one of the bedrooms. Tim Parks, Harper's magazine, "Murder Italian Style," 19 Aug. 2019 The most dramatic incident Albinati relates from his school days involves some bullies whipping a weaker boy, as in a rite of flagellation. Paul Elie, The New Yorker, "Sex and Power in “The Catholic School”," 19 Aug. 2019 Their participation in the flagellation of Cathay is a reminder that their ultimate loyalty is to the party. The Economist, "Why China’s assault on Cathay Pacific should scare all foreign firms," 22 Aug. 2019 Begin aggressive self-flagellation for choosing a bad karaoke song. Claire Friedman, The New Yorker, "Things to Do During Your Karaoke Song’s Too Long Instrumental Interlude," 31 July 2019 Sale used his postgame interview as a study in self-flagellation. Tara Sullivan, BostonGlobe.com, "First Chris Sale, then David Price, these pitched battles have got to stop," 15 July 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for flagellation

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The first known use of flagellation was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Flagellation.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/flagellation. Accessed 20 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for flagellation


flag·​el·​la·​tion | \ ˌflaj-ə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce flagellation (audio) \

Medical Definition of flagellation

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the practice of a flagellant



Medical Definition of flagellation (Entry 2 of 2)

: the formation or arrangement of flagella

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More from Merriam-Webster on flagellation

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with flagellation

Britannica English: Translation of flagellation for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about flagellation

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