in·​car·​na·​tion | \ ˌin-(ˌ)kär-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce incarnation (audio) \

Definition of incarnation

1 : the act of incarnating : the state of being incarnate
2 : a particular physical form or state : version in another incarnation he might be a first vice-president— Walter Teller TV and movie incarnations of the story
3a : a concrete or actual form of a quality or concept especially : a person showing a trait or typical character to a marked degree she is the incarnation of goodness
b(1) capitalized : the union of divinity with humanity in Jesus Christ
(2) : the embodiment of a deity or spirit in some earthly form

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Other Words from incarnation

incarnational \ ˌin-​(ˌ)kär-​ˈnā-​shə-​nᵊl How to pronounce incarnation (audio) , -​shnəl How to pronounce incarnation (audio) \ adjective

Examples of incarnation in a Sentence

the doctrine of the Incarnation she is the very incarnation of grace and tactfulness
Recent Examples on the Web The annual Doctor Who festive special has become a huge deal for the show's army of fans in the 15 years since the first-ever special holiday season episode introduced David Tennant's incarnation of the titular time-traveler. Clark Collis,, "Doctor Who showrunner teases festive special, gives update on new season," 17 Dec. 2020 Environmental groups repeatedly dragged the previous incarnation of SANDAG into court, arguing that the agency was shortchanging transit and shirking state mandates to curb greenhouse-gas emissions from cars and trucks. Joshua Emerson Smith, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Election shake-up in San Diego bodes well for envisioned $177 billion rail expansion," 12 Dec. 2020 The dexterous blues guitarist who led the first incarnation of Fleetwood Mac in a career shortened by psychedelic drugs and mental illness. Anchorage Daily News, "Final goodbye: Recalling influential people who died in 2020," 8 Dec. 2020 After that, appeared one incarnation of Krampus after another, with glowing red eyes, unkempt coats of fur, serpentine tongues and malevolent intentions. Doug Maccash | Staff Writer,, "Krampus delights with Ho Ho horrible drive-through Christmas ‘parade’," 6 Dec. 2020 The latest incarnation in the Nock On family is the Embark. Jace Bauserman, Outdoor Life, "The Best New Compound Bows for 2021," 7 Jan. 2021 Her sister Bella has sported a dark blue incarnation of the jacket in the past, wearing the piece with a pair of midriff floss pants back in March. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "Gigi Hadid Takes a Page From Bella’s Closet With This Jacket," 15 Jan. 2021 But the next incarnation of a digital demagogue may not emerge in public view. Owen Thomas,, "Why I wrote an obituary for @realDonaldTrump," 13 Jan. 2021 But another part of me felt a new incarnation of fear. Adam Lalley, STAT, "My first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine got me thinking about time," 24 Dec. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3b(2)

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Time Traveler for incarnation

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for incarnation

Last Updated

18 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Incarnation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for incarnation



English Language Learners Definition of incarnation

: one of a series of lives that a person is believed to have had in the past in some religions
: a person who represents a quality or idea
in the Christian religion : the belief in Jesus Christ as both God and a human being

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