man·​slaugh·​ter | \ ˈman-ˌslȯ-tər How to pronounce manslaughter (audio) \

Definition of manslaughter

: the unlawful killing of a human being without express or implied malice

Examples of manslaughter in a Sentence

She was convicted of manslaughter for driving while drunk and killing three people.

Recent Examples on the Web

Hillsborough match commander David Duckenfield will be facing prosecution for the manslaughter by gross negligence of 95 Liverpool supporters back in April 1989., "Hillsborough Police Chief David Duckenfield Faces Trial for Manslaughter of 95 Liverpool Supporters," 29 June 2018 The owners, Max Blanck and Isaac Harris, were acquitted of manslaughter. Elizabeth Yuan, WSJ, "Philharmonic Piece Inspired by Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Set to Debut," 23 Jan. 2019 In earlier tweets the same man called for a military coup against President Trump and accused the president, yes, of manslaughter. Fox News, "Reps. Meadows, Jordan call on Rosenstein to testify," 27 Sep. 2018 Her First Time Skipping School The 16-year-old was taken into custody and booked into the Youth Service Center for investigation of manslaughter, according to the Sheriff’s Office statement. Jameelah Nasheed, Teen Vogue, "A Teenager Is Facing Manslaughter Charges After Allegedly Shooting and Killing His Friend," 16 Aug. 2018 Three of the officers were acquitted of manslaughter; the other two did not face criminal charges. Timothy Williams, New York Times, "$16 Million vs. $4: In Fatal Police Shootings, Payouts Vary Widely," 28 June 2018 The California attorney general’s office recently said the company could face criminal charges, including manslaughter, in connection with fires, depending on the outcome of investigations. Rebecca Smith, WSJ, "PG&E Sparked at Least 1,500 California Fires. Now the Utility Faces Collapse.," 13 Jan. 2019 The teen who pulled the trigger was taken to Lew Sterrett Jail and charged with manslaughter, after he was arrested and admitted to shooting Jakiyah, reported CBS local affiliate DFW — he’s being held on a $50,000 bond. Jameelah Nasheed, Teen Vogue, "16-Year-Old Jakiyah Wrightsil Was Fatally Shot by a Friend Playing With a Gun at a Party," 9 Oct. 2018 Earlier Friday, protesters gathered outside Dallas police headquarters, demanding that Guyger be charged with murder rather than manslaughter, FOX 4 reported. Bradford Betz, Fox News, "Cruz challenger O'Rourke calls for firing of Dallas cop after apartment shooting death," 15 Sep. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for manslaughter

Last Updated

10 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for manslaughter

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

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More Definitions for manslaughter



English Language Learners Definition of manslaughter

law : the crime of killing a person without intending to do so


man·​slaugh·​ter | \ ˈman-ˌslȯ-tər How to pronounce manslaughter (audio) \

Kids Definition of manslaughter

: the unintentional but unlawful killing of a person


man·​slaugh·​ter | \ ˈman-ˌslȯt-ər How to pronounce manslaughter (audio) \

Medical Definition of manslaughter

: the slaying of a human being specifically : the unlawful killing of a human being without express or implied malice

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man·​slaugh·​ter | \ ˈman-ˌslȯ-tər How to pronounce manslaughter (audio) \

Legal Definition of manslaughter

: the unlawful killing of a human being without malice — compare homicide, murder
involuntary manslaughter
: manslaughter resulting from the failure to perform a legal duty expressly required to safeguard human life, from the commission of an unlawful act not amounting to a felony, or from the commission of a lawful act involving a risk of injury or death that is done in an unlawful, reckless, or grossly negligent manner — see also reckless homicide at homicide

Note: The exact formulation of the elements of involuntary manslaughter vary from state to state especially with regard to the level of negligence required. In states that grade manslaughter by degrees, involuntary manslaughter is usually graded as a second- or third-degree offense.

: involuntary manslaughter occurring during the commission of a misdemeanor — compare felony murder at murder
voluntary manslaughter
: manslaughter resulting from an intentional act done without malice or premeditation and while in the heat of passion or on sudden provocation

Note: In states that grade manslaughter by degrees, voluntary manslaughter is usually a first-degree offense.

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Comments on manslaughter

What made you want to look up manslaughter? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


of or relating to a parable or parabola

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