ka·​ra·​te | \ kə-ˈrä-tē How to pronounce karate (audio) \

Definition of karate

: a Japanese art of self-defense employing hand strikes and kicks to disable or subdue an opponent

Other Words from karate

karateist \ kə-​ˈrä-​tē-​ist How to pronounce karate (audio) \ noun

Examples of karate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In fact, Ralph Macchio (LaRusso) and William Zabka (Johnny Lawrence), then a pair of Hollywood babyfaces, were trying karate for the first time themselves during filming. Jason Stahl, SPIN, 4 Jan. 2022 Then, Gamble would re-enter, karate-chopping his way through a medley of Elvis hits, before everyone reconvened onstage for a grand finale. David Browne, Rolling Stone, 2 Jan. 2022 The last update shared on the GoFundMe was a video from November 14, which showed a cheerful Fowler teaching people how to do karate while seated. Korin Miller, Health.com, 22 Nov. 2021 At the final buzzer, Schaefer leapt and executed a karate-like air kick. Scott Ostler, San Francisco Chronicle, 14 Nov. 2021 Jonathan is a straight-A student at RA Jones Middle School, runs on his school's cross country team, has a green belt in karate, serves as a student ambassador in his community and plays the violin and alto saxophone. Alecia Ricker, The Enquirer, 21 Dec. 2021 Dave found GaTa blissfully doing karate, dancing, and putting on jewelry in preparation for his own video, to be shot by Emma (Christine Ko), and the duo launched into a heated argument. Derek Lawrence, EW.com, 12 Aug. 2021 This year, the team has expanded to 29 athletes in those same categories, as well as badminton, boxing, canoe sprint, cycling, karate, shooting, taekwondo, weightlifting and wrestling. Celia Darrough, ABC News, 27 July 2021 In the film, Mr. Miyagi had the main character, Daniel LaRusso, do basic chores to learn karate. Ryan Mcfadden, baltimoresun.com, 24 Nov. 2021

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

1926, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for karate

Japanese, from kara empty + te hand

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Last Updated

13 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Karate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/karate. Accessed 21 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for karate



English Language Learners Definition of karate

: a form of fighting that was developed in Japan in which your feet and hands are used to kick and hit an opponent : a Japanese martial art


ka·​ra·​te | \ kə-ˈrä-tē How to pronounce karate (audio) \

Kids Definition of karate

: an art of self-defense developed in Japan in which an attacker is defeated by kicks and punches

More from Merriam-Webster on karate

Nglish: Translation of karate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about karate


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