noun, often attributive
hos·​pi·​tal | \ˈhä-(ˌ)spi-tᵊl \

Definition of hospital 

1 : a charitable institution for the needy, aged, infirm, or young

2 : an institution where the sick or injured are given medical or surgical care usually used in British English without an article after a preposition

3 : a repair shop for specified small objects a clock hospital

Examples of hospital in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

So far, no one has died, but the outbreak has sent 13 people in the US and five in Canada to the hospital. Rachel Becker, The Verge, "Throw out your romaine, it could be contaminated with E. coli," 20 Nov. 2018 When Jack's mom is about to give birth to Nicky, Jack's grandfather shows up to the hospital. Eileen Reslen, Good Housekeeping, "10 Significant Moments You Missed From 'This Is Us' Last Night," 17 Oct. 2018 This isn't the first time Selena has been sent to the hospital recently. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "Everything We Know About Selena Gomez's Emotional Breakdown," 12 Oct. 2018 He was taken to the hospital and is in critical but stable condition, police said. Katherine Lam, Fox News, "Washington police officer killed after being struck by patrol vehicle during pursuit, officials say," 2 Oct. 2018 While there were no fatalities, the Australian Broadcasting Company reports that 9 people were taken to the hospital. Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "737 Lands in Lagoon After Missing Island Runway," 28 Sep. 2018 In 2015, a Rochester man checked into a hospital with severe memory loss, declining mental faculties, and muscle problems: all the symptoms of vCJD. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "A Man Contracted a Rare, Fatal Disease From Eating Squirrel Brains," 17 Oct. 2018 The two Boy Scouts and two adult leaders were taken to the hospital for hypothermia, Whatcom County Sheriff Bill Elfo told KING5. Katherine Lam, Fox News, "4 climbers, including 2 Boy Scouts, found alive after going missing while hiking Mount Baker in Washington," 2 Oct. 2018 So hospitals, clinics, and elderly homes and so on. Eric Johnson, Recode, "If they don’t want to lose their jobs to a machine, doctors will need to become compassionate ‘human connectors’," 17 Sep. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hospital

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin hospitale hospice, guest house, from neuter of Latin hospitalis of a guest, from hospit-, hospes

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Statistics for hospital

Last Updated

9 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for hospital

The first known use of hospital was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for hospital



English Language Learners Definition of hospital

: a place where sick or injured people are given care or treatment and where children are often born


hos·​pi·​tal | \ˈhä-ˌspi-tᵊl \

Kids Definition of hospital

: a place where the sick and injured are given medical care


noun, often attributive
hos·​pi·​tal | \ˈhäs-ˌpit-ᵊl \

Medical Definition of hospital 

1 : a charitable institution for the needy, aged, infirm, or young

2a : an institution where the sick or injured are given medical or surgical care when used in British English following a preposition, the article is usually omitted came and saw me in hospital— Robert Graves

b : a place for the care and treatment of sick and injured animals

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More from Merriam-Webster on hospital

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hospital

Spanish Central: Translation of hospital

Nglish: Translation of hospital for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hospital for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about hospital

Comments on hospital

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


having a pattern of small flowers

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