killing

1 of 2

noun

kill·​ing ˈki-liŋ How to pronounce killing (audio)
1
: the act of one that kills
2
3
: a sudden notable gain or profit
made a killing in the stock market

killing

2 of 2

adjective

1
: that kills or relates to killing
2
: highly amusing
3
: extremely difficult to deal with
the suspense is killing
also : calling for great strength, stamina, or endurance
a killing schedule
killingly adverb

Examples of killing in a Sentence

Noun The oil spill is responsible for the killing of thousands of birds. Adjective he's usually quiet, but occasionally unleashes some killing remark that cracks everyone up a killing schedule that requires the touring company to play in a different city every night
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Twelve jurors – seven men and five women – will now decide whether 26-year-old Gutierrez Reed, who was also the film’s key props assistant, is responsible for the killing. Christina Maxouris, CNN, 22 Feb. 2024 Mujahid Abdul Halim, the third man arrested in the killing, had run on stage and repeatedly shot Malcolm X, according to court filings. Marc Ramirez, USA TODAY, 22 Feb. 2024 The killing marks Kansas City’s 16th homicide of 2024, according to data maintained by The Star. Bill Lukitsch, Kansas City Star, 22 Feb. 2024 In January, during a meeting with the Palestinian ambassador, Lula condemned Hamas' attack on Oct. 7, but said there was no justification for the indiscriminate killing of civilians and pushed for a cease-fire. Democrat-Gazette Staff From Wire Reports, arkansasonline.com, 19 Feb. 2024 Police have not announced any arrests or publicly identified any suspects in the killing. James Hartley, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 19 Feb. 2024 Still, the suspects used the cover of official U.S. support to pull off the killing, which initially was planned as an arrest or kidnapping of the president. Jacqueline Charles, Miami Herald, 9 Feb. 2024 Darden was the District’s 263rd homicide victim of 2023, which pushed the city’s annual count of killings to its highest level since 1997. Peter Hermann, Washington Post, 8 Feb. 2024 From December to January, the number of killings in Guayaquil dropped by 33 percent, from 187 to 125. Annie Correal Federico Rios, New York Times, 7 Feb. 2024
Adjective
The anti-trapping, anti-killing anything movement has also taken a toll. John Schandelmeier, Anchorage Daily News, 8 Jan. 2022 For the few pests that do show up, first spray with non-killing repellents such as garlic and garlic pepper tea. Howard Garrett, Dallas News, 26 July 2021 And Morgan put an end to his non-killing ways by chopping off the head of his bounty-hunting pursuer — stealing his axe and hat in the process. Dalton Ross, EW.com, 12 Oct. 2020 The killing spree began in the cottage community of Portapique where Mr. Wortman owned several properties. New York Times, 20 Apr. 2020 The problem at hand is the novel coronavirus, and U.S. sanctions are aiding its killing spree in Iran. Bonnie Kristian, TheWeek, 18 Mar. 2020 In 2014, his daughter, Alex, was at the University of California, Santa Barbara when a gunman on a killing spree fatally shot three women outside her sorority house. James Barragán, Dallas News, 21 Feb. 2020 Keenan was the New York Police Department’s Chief of Detectives during the killing spree, which terrified the city in 1976 and 1977 as an unknown gunman stalked his victims with a .44 caliber handgun, killing six and wounding seven others. Michael R. Sisak, San Diego Union-Tribune, 20 Sep. 2019 Police reports, witness statements and dispatch logs shared earlier have provided more detail about the confusion and heroism as the concert venue became a killing field. Ken Ritter, Fox News, 13 June 2018 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of killing was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near killing

Cite this Entry

“Killing.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/killing. Accessed 5 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition

killing

noun
kill·​ing
ˈkil-iŋ
: a sudden large profit

More from Merriam-Webster on killing

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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