marathon

noun

mar·​a·​thon ˈmer-ə-ˌthän How to pronounce marathon (audio)
ˈma-rə-
often attributive
1
: a footrace run on an open course usually of 26 miles 385 yards (42.2 kilometers)
broadly : a long-distance race
2
a
: an endurance contest
b
: something (such as an event, activity, or session) characterized by great length or concentrated effort

Examples of marathon in a Sentence

We watched a marathon of our favorite movies.
Recent Examples on the Web With the Olympics taking place in Paris this month, the men’s shows were immediately followed by couture, effectively turning Paris into a two-week fashion marathon. José Criales-Unzueta, Vogue, 1 July 2024 In a marathon, what’s wrong is going to have many opportunities to show itself: weird moments in speeches, possibly another debate, although who knows. Isaac Chotiner, The New Yorker, 28 June 2024 When a marathon featuring local record holder Hare is announced, the entire chicken coop goes gaga. Husna Haq, The Christian Science Monitor, 27 June 2024 Rudy Giuliani called the cops on Borat crew, claiming extortion, producer says 04 of 20 Brittany Runs a Marathon (2019) Jillian Bell leads this charming comedy about a woman who is motivated to run in the New York City marathon after her doctor deems her overweight and unhealthy. Kevin Jacobsen, EW.com, 22 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for marathon 

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

Word History

Etymology

Marathon, Greece, site of a victory of Greeks over Persians in 490 b.c., the news of which was carried to Athens by a long-distance runner

First Known Use

1896, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of marathon was in 1896

Dictionary Entries Near marathon

Cite this Entry

“Marathon.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/marathon. Accessed 15 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

marathon

noun
mar·​a·​thon ˈmar-ə-ˌthän How to pronounce marathon (audio)
1
a
: a long-distance footrace of 26 miles 385 yards (42.2 kilometers) that is run on an open course
b
: a race other than a footrace (as for swimmers) marked especially by great distance
2
: a long hard contest
a dance marathon
marathon adjective
Etymology

named for Marathon, site of a battlefield in ancient Greece

Word Origin
Marathon is the name of a plain in Greece located about 26 miles (42 kilometers) from the city of Athens. It was the scene of a great victory by the Greeks over the Persians in 490 b.c. According to legend a Greek soldier named Pheidipiddes ran all the way from the battlefield to Athens to deliver the news. He reached the city, gasped out his message, and fell dead. When the modern Olympic Games began in 1896, one of the events was a footrace of 26 miles 385 yards (42.2 kilometers), called a marathon, in honor of the legendary run by Pheidipiddes.

Geographical Definition

Marathon

geographical name

Mar·​a·​thon ˈmer-ə-ˌthän How to pronounce Marathon (audio)
ˈma-rə-
1
plain of eastern Greece in Attica northeast of Athens on the Aegean Sea
2
ancient town on the plain of Marathon
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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