mar·​tin | \ ˈmär-tᵊn How to pronounce martin (audio) \

Definition of martin

 (Entry 1 of 7)

1 : a small Eurasian bird (Delichon urbica) of the swallow family with a forked tail, bluish-black head and back, and white rump and underparts
2 : any of various birds (especially genus Progne) of the swallow family other than the Eurasian martin — compare purple martin


biographical name (1)
Mar·​tin | \ ˈmär-tᵊn How to pronounce Martin (audio) , mär-ˈtaⁿ \

Definition of Martin (Entry 2 of 7)

Saint circa 316–397 Martin of Tours patron saint of France


biographical name (2)
Mar·​tin | \ ˈmär-tᵊn How to pronounce Martin (audio) \

Definition of Martin (Entry 3 of 7)

Archer John Porter 1910–2002 British chemist


biographical name (3)

Definition of Martin (Entry 4 of 7)

Glenn Luther 1886–1955 American airplane manufacturer


biographical name (4)

Definition of Martin (Entry 5 of 7)

Joseph William 1884–1968 American publisher and politician


biographical name (5)

Definition of Martin (Entry 6 of 7)

Micheál 1960-     prime minister of Ireland (2020– )


biographical name (6)
Mar·​tin | \ ˈmär-tᵊn How to pronounce Martin (audio) , mär-ˈtaⁿ \

Definition of Martin (Entry 7 of 7)

Paul (Edgar Philippe) 1938–     prime minister of Canada (2003–06)

Examples of martin in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The favorite house has six pairs of nesters while two other houses just a year old do not have any martins. Calvin Finch,, 30 Apr. 2020 Sparrows and martins squabble but eventually share the house. Calvin Finch,, 27 Feb. 2020 Earth smells and the pungency of privet and balsam were still acute at this hour, unmingled; the shadows were as bold as in a child’s picture book; swifts and house martins tracked across the pale sky overhead, shrilling in thrilled anticipation. Tessa Hadley, The New Yorker, 21 Oct. 2019 During the day, purple martins fly in and out of the birdhouse in the backyard. Brantley Hargrove, Popular Mechanics, 3 Aug. 2017 In some species of bird, such as the purple martin, a male will allow another male to occupy part of his territory in exchange for help raising his young. Ben Crair,, 1 Aug. 2017 Much of the prosecutorial strategy depends on how much leeway the military judge provides Martins to use Khan. Spencer Ackerman, WIRED, 9 Apr. 2012 Martins declined comment through the Pentagon’s war court spokesman, Air Force Maj. Carol Rosenberg, miamiherald, 23 June 2017 Martins said the contract between Disney and the Magic includes provisions for renewal if the league decides to continue the program after the 2019-20 season. Josh Robbins,, 20 June 2017

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


circa 1525, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for martin


probably from St. Martin

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The first known use of martin was circa 1525

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Cite this Entry

“Martin.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for martin



English Language Learners Definition of martin

: a small bird that is related to the swallows


mar·​tin | \ ˈmär-tᵊn How to pronounce martin (audio) \

Kids Definition of martin

1 : a European swallow with a forked tail
2 : any of several birds (as the North American purple martin ) resembling or related to the true martin

More from Merriam-Webster on martin

Nglish: Translation of martin for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of martin for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about martin


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