lin·​gam ˈliŋ-gəm How to pronounce lingam (audio)
variants or linga
: a stylized phallic symbol that is worshipped in Hinduism as a sign of generative power and that represents the god Shiva compare yoni

Examples of lingam in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In the popular telling, a Kashmiri Muslim named Buta Malik discovered the Shiva lingam in the eighteenth century. Fahad Shah, Foreign Affairs, 10 Sep. 2015 Axel Vervoordt owns an Indian lingam from the 19th century. WSJ, 6 Apr. 2018 In every nook and cranny are numerous shrines and lingams. Antonia Neubauer, Town & Country, 5 Oct. 2016 The oval object in front is a Japanese lingam from the 19th century. Thomas Gebremedhin, WSJ, 27 Mar. 2018 Magazine incorrectly said that the lingam was Japanese in origin. WSJ, 6 Apr. 2018 The tradition is that a pregnant woman walks into the river and discovers the lingam with her feet. Thomas Gebremedhin, WSJ, 27 Mar. 2018 A city of lingams dedicated to the Lord God Shiva, Varanasi is known as an auspicious place to die and a super-highway to heaven. Antonia Neubauer, Town & Country, 5 Oct. 2016 The builders of Vat Phou had noticed this and proclaimed it a natural lingam of Shiva. Edward Wong, New York Times, 4 Apr. 2017

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

Word History


Sanskrit liṅga (nominative liṅgam), literally, characteristic

First Known Use

1719, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of lingam was in 1719

Dictionary Entries Near lingam

Cite this Entry

“Lingam.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 May. 2024.

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