Definition of jubilee
1a : a special anniversary; especially : a 50th anniversaryb : a celebration of such an anniversary
2a : jubilationb : a season of celebration
3 often capitalized : a year of emancipation and restoration provided by ancient Hebrew law to be kept every 50 years by the emancipation of Hebrew slaves, restoration of alienated lands to their former owners, and omission of all cultivation of the land
4a : a period of time proclaimed by the Roman Catholic pope ordinarily every 25 years as a time of special solemnityb : a special plenary indulgence granted during a year of jubilee to Roman Catholics who perform certain specified works of repentance and piety
5 : a religious song of black Americans usually referring to a time of future happiness
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Examples of jubilee in a Sentence
the town is planning a year-long jubilee in celebration of its founding 200 years ago
Recent Examples of jubilee from the Web
Designers, models, and actors descended upon the British residence in New York to continue Dame Anna’s jubilee, of sorts.
But the jubilee was expected to continue into the early morning hours, as marchers migrated to Boystown neighborhood bars to celebrate.
Celebrating Pepper at 50 The golden jubilee will unfold as if the sergeant were a monarch.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'jubilee'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of jubilee
Middle English, from Anglo-French & Late Latin; Anglo-French jubilé, from Late Latin jubilaeus, modification of Late Greek iōbēlaios, from Hebrew yōbhēl ram's horn, jubilee
First Known Use: 14th centurySee Words from the same year
Definition of jubilee
: flambé cherries jubilee
First Known Use of jubilee
JUBILEE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of jubilee for English Language Learners
: a special anniversary; also : a celebration at the time of such an anniversary
JUBILEE Defined for Kids
Definition of jubilee for Students
1 : a 50th anniversary
2 : a time of celebration
History for jubilee
In ancient Hebrew tradition every 50th year was a time of restoration, when slaves were freed and lands restored to their former owners. This year took its Hebrew name, yōbhēl, from the ram's horn trumpets sounded to proclaim its coming. When the Hebrew scriptures were translated into Greek, yōbhēl was rendered as iōbēlaios. Under the influence of the Latin verb jubilare, “to let out joyful shouts,” the Greek word became jubilaeus in Latin, from which it came into English in the 1300s.
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