man·​hood | \ ˈman-ˌhu̇d How to pronounce manhood (audio) \

Definition of manhood

1 : the condition of being a human being
2 : qualities associated with men : manliness
3 : the condition of being an adult male as distinguished from a child or female
4 : adult males : men
5 : penis

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Examples of manhood in a Sentence

He took the comment as a challenge to his manhood. He grew from boyhood to manhood in a small southern town. the manhood of a nation
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Recent Examples on the Web Hemingway figured not only in our classes but in our lives, as the exemplar of a certain kind of manhood. Tobias Wolff, The New Yorker, "A Death in the Afternoon," 20 Feb. 2021 Excruciating monologues about Ryan Reynolds’s manhood. Jon O'brien, Vulture, "A Guide to Russell T. Davies’s Queer Canon," 18 Feb. 2021 The history of the American Negro is the history of this strife, — this longing to attain self-conscious manhood, to merge his double self into a better and truer self. Duante Beddingfield, Detroit Free Press, "Scarab Club hosts W.E.B. DuBois-inspired art exhibit about Black life in America," 13 Feb. 2021 Then came the 6:25 mark of the fourth quarter against the Pistons, the game very much in doubt, and Wiseman’s biggest-yet step into manhood. Bruce Jenkins,, "James Wiseman went coast to coast, and the Warriors’ world changed," 29 Dec. 2020 Or does a stronger, better version of manhood come from continuing to be the friend and protector that his younger brother needs? al, "Mobile actor breaks through in ‘Embattled,’ movie filmed in Birmingham," 4 Dec. 2020 What is White America going to do to claim and to rework White manhood into something less harmful? Nneka Mcguire, Washington Post, "Ijeoma Oluo’s ‘Mediocre’ dissects white supremacy in America. She’d rather be writing about something else.," 3 Dec. 2020 In transforming Beowulf into an allegory of twenty-first-century American toxic masculinity, Headley suppresses some of the complexity of early medieval manhood. Irina Dumitrescu, The New York Review of Books, "Dudes Without Heirs," 17 Nov. 2020 His words echo similar responses arguing that Owens’ idea of manliness is based on cultural expectations created over time, not anything inherent to manhood. NBC News, "Candace Owens gets backlash from Harry Styles fans over 'bring back manly men' tweet," 17 Nov. 2020

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for manhood

Time Traveler

The first known use of manhood was in the 13th century

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Statistics for manhood

Last Updated

25 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Manhood.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for manhood



English Language Learners Definition of manhood

: the qualities (such as strength and courage) that are expected in a man
: the state or condition of being an adult man and no longer a boy
: adult men


man·​hood | \ ˈman-ˌhu̇d How to pronounce manhood (audio) \

Kids Definition of manhood

1 : qualities (as strength and courage) believed to be typical of men
2 : the state of being an adult human male
3 : adult human males

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Comments on manhood

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