fu·​ner·​al | \ ˈfyün-rəl How to pronounce funeral (audio) , ˈfyü-nə-\

Definition of funeral

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or constituting a funeral



Definition of funeral (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the observances held for a dead person usually before burial or cremation
2 chiefly dialectal : a funeral sermon
3 : a funeral procession
4 : an end of something's existence
5 : a matter of concern to one : worry if you flunk, it's your funeral

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Examples of funeral in a Sentence


a slow and heavy funeral song


Only family attended the funeral. His funeral will be held on Friday. His cousin made the funeral arrangements.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Family and friends may call TODAY from 4-7 p.m. at the funeral chapel. Hartford Courant,, "Santina Amenta," 6 July 2018 When Alfredo, a carpenter, accuses Achille of sabotaging his work, Achille and his cronies pluck the man from his pew during a funeral mass. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "My Brilliant Friend Producer Breaks Down the Violence of Episode 1," 19 Nov. 2018 Ariana was among those scheduled to perform during the funeral service for the Queen of Soul and her fiancé came to support her performance. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Pete Davidson Attended Aretha Franklin's Funeral as Ariana Grande's Date and Social Media Was Confused," 31 Aug. 2018 Burial is typically the most expensive option for funeral arrangements. Ace Ratcliff, SELF, "6 Things You Should Do Now to Prepare for Your Own Funeral," 30 Aug. 2018 Tobias Menzies, who plays Prince Philip, was also on the Aberfan set in South Wales, filming scenes of a funeral procession. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "New Photos from the Set of The Crown Show Its Commitment to Accuracy," 4 Oct. 2018 The hearse was built to cruise at 14 mph, because that is the traditional speed of a funeral procession. A.j. Baime, WSJ, "The 1939 Hearse That Refuses to Die," 25 Sep. 2018 There will be a prayer service at 2 p.m. The funeral Mass will follow at 3 p.m. in the chapel., "Adrienne Marie Mack SND," 26 June 2018 At Pickett's funeral March 9, Butler led Mandy in the procession to the grave site. Jenna Watson, Indianapolis Star, "Mandy was going to the 'killer barn.' 12 years later, she led Deputy Pickett to his grave.," 29 Mar. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

As monarch, the Queen will be given a state funeral, which is expected to take place 12 days after her death. Katie Frost, Town & Country, "What Will Happen When Queen Elizabeth II Dies?," 25 Mar. 2019 The infamous song has been played at several funerals, including, President JFK, Princess Diana, and Elvis Presley's. Selena Barrientos, Good Housekeeping, "20 Best Irish Songs to Help You Celebrate St. Patrick's Day," 13 Feb. 2019 Then the chaos ended with a funeral, and the quiet proved far worse. Claire Galofaro, The Seattle Times, "Moms of the dead from drugs: “Where is the outrage for us?”," 29 Jan. 2019 Aretha's publicist confirmed to CNN that Ariana will take part in the funeral, which will take place in Detroit on Friday, August 31, after a week-long period of public viewing at the city's Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. Devon Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, "Ariana Grande Will Perform at Aretha Franklin's Funeral," 29 Aug. 2018 Resham’s funeral, which followed Hindu customs, was attended by nearly 400 people. Theresa Vargas, Washington Post, "A Nepali immigrant brought his daughter to America for a better life. Then his own was taken.," 11 July 2018 Landmark events like funerals, weddings and births always force me to take stock and adjust course. Rob Weinberg, Pomerado News, "Mr. Marketing: Milestone birthday reflections," 28 June 2018 Everyone talks about Dan [Gheesling's] funeral, that's obviously a stand out. Brian Porreca, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Big Brother' Bosses Preview New Twists in Season 20," 27 June 2018 Zhadan’s apostles encounter one another at weddings, funerals, bars, and deathbeds. Linda Kinstler, Longreads, "Angrily Experiencing the Best Days of Our Lives," 27 June 2018

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


circa 1513, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for funeral


Middle English, from Late Latin funeralis, from Latin funer-, funus funeral (noun)


Middle English funerelles (plural), from Middle French funerailles (plural), from Medieval Latin funeralia (plural), from Late Latin, neuter plural of funeralis, adjective

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

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English Language Learners Definition of funeral

: a ceremony held for a dead person


fu·​ner·​al | \ ˈfyü-nə-rəl How to pronounce funeral (audio) , ˈfyün-rəl\

Kids Definition of funeral

: the ceremonies held for a dead person (as before burial)

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Comments on funeral

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


to move or proceed with twists and turns

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