im·​mure i-ˈmyu̇r How to pronounce immure (audio)
immured; immuring

transitive verb

: to enclose within or as if within walls
: to build into a wall
especially : to entomb in a wall
immurement noun

Did you know?

Like mural, immure comes from murus, a Latin noun that means "wall." Immurare, a Medieval Latin verb, was formed from murus and the prefix in- (meaning "in" or "within"). Immure, which first appeared in English in the late 16th century, literally means "to wall in" or "to enclose with a wall," but it has extended meanings as well. In addition to senses meaning "to imprison" and "to entomb," the word sometimes has broader applications, essentially meaning "to shut in" or "to confine." One might remark, for example, that a very studious acquaintance spends most of her time "immured in the library" or that a withdrawn teenager "immures himself in his bedroom every night."

Examples of immure in a Sentence

scientists at the research station in Alaska are immured by the frozen wastelands that surround them immured by a controlling, possessive mother, the young woman had no outside social life
Recent Examples on the Web Lying on the sofa, I became slowly immured in the concrete reality of this edifice and of its facts. Rachel Cusk, New York Times, 2 May 2023 Forty-six people perished, many immured by the unrelenting gridiron just below the water’s surface. John O'Connor, Chicago Tribune, 30 Apr. 2023 Forty-six people perished, many immured by the unrelenting gridiron just below the water's surface. John O'Connor,, 30 Apr. 2023 The last slave had been immured within its walls, and St. Michael’s curfew was to be sweetest music thenceforth and forever. Jonathan W. White, Smithsonian, 27 Feb. 2018

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'immure.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Medieval Latin immurare, from Latin in- + murus wall — more at munition

First Known Use

1583, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of immure was in 1583


Dictionary Entries Near immure

Cite this Entry

“Immure.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Oct. 2023.

Kids Definition


im·​mure im-ˈyu̇(ə)r How to pronounce immure (audio)
immured; immuring
: to enclose within or as if within walls : imprison
immurement noun

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