hu·​man·​i·​tar·​i·​an | \ hyü-ˌma-nə-ˈter-ē-ən How to pronounce humanitarian (audio) , yü- \

Definition of humanitarian

: a person promoting human welfare and social reform : philanthropist recognized as a great humanitarian for her work to end world hunger

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Other Words from humanitarian

humanitarian adjective
humanitarianism \ hyü-​ˌma-​nə-​ˈter-​ē-​ə-​ˌni-​zəm How to pronounce humanitarian (audio) , yü-​ \ noun

Examples of humanitarian in a Sentence

She has been recognized as a great humanitarian for her efforts to end world hunger.
Recent Examples on the Web Established in 1873 as Louisville Colored School, the school has historically served Black students and lists a number of prominent alumni, most notably Muhammad Ali, the late world heavy-weight boxing champion and humanitarian. Deborah Yetter, The Courier-Journal, "Central High School, U of L Health to host one-day COVID-19 vaccine clinic Saturday," 21 Apr. 2021 And so that was really the moment that sparked my dream to become a humanitarian. Neha Prakash, Marie Claire, "Anne Hathaway and Elizabeth Nyamayaro on Building Compassion and Gender Equity," 20 Apr. 2021 In this buoyant memoir, Nyamayaro traces her journey from that moment to a lifetime calling as a humanitarian in London, Geneva, and finally, as a United Nations Senior Advisor in New York. Susanna Schrobsdorff, Time, "I'm Awash In Pandemic-Fueled Gratitude and Taking a Solitary Cross-Country Road Trip," 18 Apr. 2021 Wayne Arthur Donnay was a humanitarian who sought to help his friends, family and neighbors., "Help support local journalism like this," 11 Mar. 2021 His road to becoming a humanitarian was paved with trial and error. Vincent T. Davis,, "San Antonio chef overcame troubled past to help youth avoid similar pitfalls," 14 Dec. 2020 Garrett has become a better man, a more passionate humanitarian, a more vocal leader and a more ferocious pass-rusher in the aftermath of the incident that would have probably caused many to crumble. Mary Kay Cabot, cleveland, "Myles Garrett earns Browns’ Walter Payton Man of the Year Award after becoming his best self following helmet incident," 11 Dec. 2020 Christmas special Dolly Parton's Christmas on the Square, a musical that sees the singer-actress-humanitarian as a literal angel. Irina Grechko,, "Dolly Parton’s Christmas On The Square," 24 Nov. 2020 The big-hearted humanitarian has a history of covering the expenses for rent, funerals and college education for those in need as well, particularly in his Atlanta community. Sophie Dodd,, "Tyler Perry's Most Impressive Philanthropic and Cultural Achievements Through the Years," 18 Sep. 2020

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

1843, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for humanitarian

Time Traveler

The first known use of humanitarian was in 1843

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Statistics for humanitarian

Last Updated

28 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Humanitarian.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for humanitarian



English Language Learners Definition of humanitarian

: a person who works to make other people's lives better


hu·​man·​i·​tar·​i·​an | \ hyü-ˌma-nə-ˈter-ē-ən How to pronounce humanitarian (audio) , yü- \

Kids Definition of humanitarian

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who works to improve the lives and living conditions of other people



Kids Definition of humanitarian (Entry 2 of 2)

: relating to or characteristic of people who work to improve the lives and living conditions of other people humanitarian efforts

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Comments on humanitarian

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