hal·​low | \ ˈha-(ˌ)lō How to pronounce hallow (audio) \
hallowed; hallowing; hallows

Definition of hallow

transitive verb

1 : to make holy or set apart for holy use
2 : to respect greatly : venerate the most hallowed of all law-enforcement agencies— Dwight MacDonald

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Choose the Right Synonym for hallow

devote, dedicate, consecrate, hallow mean to set apart for a special and often higher end. devote is likely to imply compelling motives and often attachment to an objective. devoted his evenings to study dedicate implies solemn and exclusive devotion to a sacred or serious use or purpose. dedicated her life to medical research consecrate stresses investment with a solemn or sacred quality. consecrate a church to the worship of God hallow, often differing little from dedicate or consecrate, may distinctively imply an attribution of intrinsic sanctity. battlegrounds hallowed by the blood of patriots

Examples of hallow in a Sentence

Lincoln's memorable words at the Gettysburg battlefield, “we cannot dedicate—we cannot consecrate—we cannot hallow—this ground”.
Recent Examples on the Web Frenchman Street’s hallowed jazz halls, including Snug Harbor, are empty. Andrew J. Yawn, USA TODAY, "Jazz funerals, normally a 'celebration of life,' are silenced: New Orleans grieves differently now," 25 Apr. 2020 The art of the civilizing myth, the pleasing illusion, which once did something to hallow the institution, has given way to a dress-down cult of the merely functional, a culture of drabness. Michael Knox Beran, National Review, "Can Today’s Soulless Institutions Be Revived?," 6 Feb. 2020 Legend has it that proposals for a mid-engined Corvette date back to Zora Arkus-Duntov, the car’s hallowed first chief engineer. Mark Phelan, Freep.com, "Free Press Car of the Year: 2020 Chevrolet Corvette delivers on decades of promises," 29 Dec. 2019 Citizens cannot even agree over once-hallowed and shared national holidays such as Christmas, Thanksgiving, and the Fourth of July. Victor Davis Hanson, National Review, "The Death of American Citizenship," 26 Sep. 2019 View this post on Instagram As the economic crisis hallows out some elements of Puerto Rican life, other locales evolve in the hands of artists. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Who Is Blanca Ocasio-Cortez, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's Mom?," 31 Jan. 2019 The leaders of Abundant Life plan to celebrate the 250th anniversary of First Reformed with a reconsecration ceremony, a chance to fire up the rusty old organ and hallow these halls anew, in memory of those who built them centuries ago. Justin Chang, latimes.com, "The bracing 'First Reformed,' starring a superb Ethan Hawke, resurrects Paul Schrader's career," 17 May 2018 Industrial comebacks are possible The country’s industrial heartland can appear hallowed-out, based on statistics and its portrayal in the media. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "How fighting inequality can help cities grow their economies," 25 Apr. 2018 Telling about the Holocaust as an end in itself hallows the slavery without the Exodus. Ruth R. Wisse, WSJ, "To Appreciate Freedom, Remember Slavery," 29 Mar. 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hallow

Middle English halowen, from Old English hālgian, from hālig holy — more at holy

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Time Traveler for hallow

Time Traveler

The first known use of hallow was before the 12th century

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Statistics for hallow

Cite this Entry

“Hallow.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hallow. Accessed 4 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for hallow


hal·​low | \ ˈha-lō How to pronounce hallow (audio) \
hallowed; hallowing

Kids Definition of hallow

: to set apart for holy purposes : treat as sacred This ground is hallowed.

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