mag·​na·​nim·​i·​ty | \ ˌmag-nə-ˈni-mə-tē How to pronounce magnanimity (audio) \
plural magnanimities

Definition of magnanimity

1 : the quality of being magnanimous : loftiness of spirit enabling one to bear trouble calmly, to disdain meanness and pettiness, and to display a noble generosity He had the magnanimity to forgive her for lying about him.
2 : a magnanimous act the great magnanimities between soldiers— Katharine Tynan

Examples of magnanimity in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Azerbaijan has thus far shown little of the magnanimity in victory that might help break this cycle. Neil Hauer, The Christian Science Monitor, "In Nagorno-Karabakh ‘peace,’ a bitter conflict remains unresolved," 12 Nov. 2020 In the conciliatory tones of his maiden speech as president-elect, Biden made a pitch to our better natures in a manner that reverberated with Finch-like magnanimity and rectitude. Washington Post, "In Biden victory, a cast change: Out with Richard III, in with Atticus Finch," 9 Nov. 2020 In the cruel logic of existential war, demonstrating rather than using a new weapon can convey to autocratic belligerents hesitancy seen as weakness to be manipulated rather than as magnanimity to be reciprocated. Victor Davis Hanson Tribune News Service, Star Tribune, "75 years after the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki: Another edition of the annual bomb debate," 6 Aug. 2020 Without the usual systems of amplification and distribution, the very tools of fame are changing — benevolent magnanimity is out, relatability is in; polish is out, transparency is in. Jon Caramanica, New York Times, "How Hip-Hop Royalty Found a New Home on Instagram Live," 7 May 2020 In a country where the government enjoys vast powers over farm ownership, Grace Mugabe will need Mnangagwa’s magnanimity to keep the land. Washington Post, "Workers on Mugabe’s farms hope his widow will help them," 11 Sep. 2019 More than most dictators, Erdogan views magnanimity with contempt and as a sign of weakness, rather than a gesture to be reciprocated in kind. Victor Davis Hanson, National Review, "The Trump Doctrine: Deterrence without Intervention?," 5 Nov. 2019 Even with Zemlinsky, Alma made no secret that the bestowal of her beautiful and Christian self on a small, ugly Jew was a gracious act of magnanimity. Cathleen Schine, The New York Review of Books, "It Had to Be Her," 7 Jan. 2020 Seldom has apparent magnanimity disguised such malevolence. The Economist, "India passes a bill purporting to help refugees. In fact, it seeks to hurt Muslims," 11 Dec. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

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Statistics for magnanimity

Last Updated

18 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Magnanimity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for magnanimity


mag·​na·​nim·​i·​ty | \ ˌmag-nə-ˈni-mə-tē How to pronounce magnanimity (audio) \

Kids Definition of magnanimity

: the quality of being generous and noble

More from Merriam-Webster on magnanimity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for magnanimity

Nglish: Translation of magnanimity for Spanish Speakers

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