ju·​bi·​lee | \ ˈjü-bə-(ˌ)lē How to pronounce jubilee (audio) , ˌjü-bə-ˈlē \

Definition of jubilee

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a special anniversary especially : a 50th anniversary
b : a celebration of such an anniversary
b : 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 solemnity
b : 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 African Americans usually referring to a time of future happiness


adjective, often capitalized

Definition of jubilee (Entry 2 of 2)

: flambé cherries jubilee

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Examples of jubilee in a Sentence

Noun the town is planning a year-long jubilee in celebration of its founding 200 years ago
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The billionaire rapper, entrepreneur, and co-owner of D’Ussé cognac is today—on his actual birthday—unveiling a new pricey brandy to mark his personal golden jubilee. John Kell, Fortune, "Exclusive: Cognac House D’Ussé to Release a Limited Edition Barrel in Honor of Jay-Z’s 50th Birthday," 4 Dec. 2019 Set on the eve of the Japanese invasion of the British colony of Singapore in 1942, the book centers on a rubber plantation owner who is intent on celebrating his firm’s jubilee even as all hell is breaking loose in Southeast Asia. Washington Post, "The best audiobooks of 2019," 21 Nov. 2019 The BRITs launched in 1977, to coincide with Queen Elizabeth II's silver jubilee, but didn't return until 1982, which means 2020 will be the 40th anniversary. Paul Grein, Billboard, "U.K.'s BRIT Awards Cut Categories, Eliminate Fan Voting, Give Artists More Control Of Performances," 5 Nov. 2019 To continue educating clients, King said the brand is considering ideas for activities and events following the golden jubilee. Los Angeles Times, "First look: Van Cleef & Arpels unveils renovated jewelry boutique with Champagne bar and dining room," 26 Sep. 2019 Lang, who through representatives declined to comment for this article, apparently envisioned the revival as a cross-generational jubilee: screen-addled millennials and nostalgia-prone Baby Boomers united in song. Daniel Arkin, NBC News, "Woodstock 50: How the golden anniversary festival went off track," 20 July 2019 The festival is one of many events hosted by the mission in recognition of its jubilee. Carolina Gusman, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Festival of the Bells celebrates 250th jubilee of San Diego’s first mission," 11 July 2019 This golden jubilee will be a historic occasion celebrated by a variety of exhibitions and festivals, while the colorful Mauritius flag is displayed in shops, homes, schools and government buildings all over the island. Cnt Editors, Condé Nast Traveler, "30 Places to Travel This Spring," 12 Feb. 2018 One of the most visited historic landmarks in San Diego — more than 50,000 visitors yearly — the Mission San Diego de Alcalá, organizers estimate, will attract an attendance of more than 1,000 people at the two-day jubilee. San Diego Union-Tribune, "9 things to do in San Diego this weekend: Pride, ‘Miss Saigon,’ Over The Line Tournament," 12 July 2019

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.

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First Known Use of jubilee


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3


1951, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for 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

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

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Last Updated

18 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Jubilee.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/jubilee. Accessed 28 January 2020.

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More Definitions for jubilee


How to pronounce jubilee (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of jubilee

: a special anniversary also : a celebration at the time of such an anniversary


ju·​bi·​lee | \ ˈjü-bə-ˌlē How to pronounce jubilee (audio) , ˌjü-bə-ˈlē \

Kids Definition of jubilee

1 : a 50th anniversary
2 : a time of celebration

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More from Merriam-Webster on jubilee

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for jubilee

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with jubilee

Spanish Central: Translation of jubilee

Nglish: Translation of jubilee for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of jubilee for Arabic Speakers

Comments on jubilee

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


showing steady, earnest care and effort

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