martyrdom

noun
mar·tyr·dom | \ ˈmär-tər-dəm \

Definition of martyrdom 

1 : the suffering of death on account of adherence to a cause and especially to one's religious faith … defended moral truth even to the point of enduring martyrdom —Andrew Sullivan

Examples of martyrdom in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Whatever happens, Mr Sharif and his daughter are likely to acquire an air of martyrdom. The Economist, "Pakistan’s former prime minister embraces jail to rally his party," 12 July 2018 While the government laid out requirements for martyrdom in 2011—stipulating that deaths must have occurred in the course of public service—what constitutes a national hero is less clear. Chun Han Wong, WSJ, "China Guards Its Historical Heroes With New Law," 27 Apr. 2018 The links represent a single thistle and four interlinked sprigs of rue, and a pendant portraying St. Andrew carrying the cross of his martyrdom hangs down the center, according to the royal family. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Prince William's Super Ornate Outfit in Scotland Is Full of Royal Symbolism," 6 July 2018 Yet his martyrdom helped change America for the better. The Economist, "A different dream," 5 July 2018 Polish identity has leaned heavily on collective suffering and even a sense of martyrdom, sociologists say. James Mcauley, Washington Post, "Poland’s new ‘Holocaust law’ comes up against massacre of Jews in 1941," 22 Feb. 2018 However, Martin’s martyrdom did not go in vain, and in the following years, the outrage brought about remarkable change. Seattle Times Staff, The Seattle Times, "‘I was so distraught’: Readers remember the day Dr. King was shot," 3 Apr. 2018 That won him many converts, but for the action, authorities tied him to an anchor and tossed him into the Black Sea, a martyrdom which later earned him sainthood. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "No, the Bone of Saint Clement Was Probably Not Just Found in London’s Trash," 4 May 2018 In martyrdom videos that were released after the attack, Balawi explained that Taliban and Al Qaeda operatives had worked with him to pass along exclusive and accurate information, in order to win the C.I.A.’s trust. Rachel Aviv, The New Yorker, "The Spy Who Came Home," 30 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'martyrdom.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of martyrdom

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about martyrdom

Dictionary Entries near martyrdom

martynia

Martyniaceae

martyr

martyrdom

martyress

martyrish

martyrium

Statistics for martyrdom

Last Updated

22 Aug 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for martyrdom

The first known use of martyrdom was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for martyrdom

martyrdom

noun

English Language Learners Definition of martyrdom

: the suffering and death of a martyr

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on martyrdom

Spanish Central: Translation of martyrdom

Nglish: Translation of martyrdom for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of martyrdom for Arabic Speakers

Comments on martyrdom

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to make amends

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!