\ ˈhaj How to pronounce hajj (audio) \
variants: or less commonly

Definition of hajj

: the pilgrimage to Mecca prescribed as a religious duty for Muslims

Examples of hajj in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Halting the hajj, which attracts millions of pilgrims to Islam’s birthplace, would be unprecedented in recent history. BostonGlobe.com, "Amid pandemic, UN cancels global climate conference," 1 Apr. 2020 Saudi Arabia has suspended the umrah pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina and could be forced to limit or cancel the much larger hajj later this year. Bloomberg.com, "Iran Reports More Than 100 New Virus Deaths as Fears Mount," 29 Apr. 2020 Cholera outbreaks in multiple years throughout the 19th century claimed thousands of pilgrims’ lives during the hajj. Ken Chitwood, Smithsonian Magazine, "This Pandemic Isn’t the First Time the Hajj Has Been Disrupted for Muslims," 23 Apr. 2020 Scripture studies, weddings, bar mitzvahs, Lenten fish fries and even the annual hajj pilgrimage to Mecca went from set in stone to TBD or not at all. Los Angeles Times, "Holy oil, masks and FaceTime: The coronavirus forces Catholics to adapt last rites," 11 Apr. 2020 And, right after that, the driver goes on pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia for the hajj. David Remnick, The New Yorker, "What Lawrence Wright Learned from His Pandemic Novel," 5 Apr. 2020 That decision alone disrupted travel for thousands of Muslims already headed to the kingdom and potentially affects plans later this year for millions more ahead of the fasting month of Ramadan and the annual hajj pilgrimage. Time, "Saudi Officials Ban Pilgrimages to Mecca Over COVID-19," 4 Mar. 2020 Disease has been a constant concern surrounding the hajj, with cholera outbreaks in the 19th century killing tens of thousands making the trip. Jon Gambrell, BostonGlobe.com, "Countries take harsh steps as they struggle to contain virus," 27 Feb. 2020 There are also concerns that the virus, officially known as the COVID-19 virus, could affect the annual 10-day hajj, which also attracts millions of people a year. Zachary Halaschak, Washington Examiner, "'Unprecedented': Saudi Arabia bans pilgrimage to holy sites as coronavirus spreads," 27 Feb. 2020

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

1673, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hajj

Arabic ḥajj

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Last Updated

6 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Hajj.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hajj. Accessed 2 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for hajj


How to pronounce hajj (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of hajj

: a journey to Mecca that is a religious duty for Muslims

More from Merriam-Webster on hajj

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hajj

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about hajj

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