mem·​oir | \ ˈmem-ˌwär How to pronounce memoir (audio) , -ˌwȯr \

Definition of memoir

1 : an official note or report : memorandum
2a : a narrative composed from personal experience every memoir reminds us of the faraway and long ago, of loss and change, of persons and places beyond recall— Abigail McCarthy
b : autobiography usually used in pluralHis memoirs recall his student days at Harvard.
c : biography his memoir of his longtime friend
3a : an account of something noteworthy : report the work described and discussed in this memoir represent a first-class investigation— J. A. Steers
b memoirs plural : the record of the proceedings of a learned society

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Other Words from memoir

memoirist \ ˈmem-​ˌwär-​ist How to pronounce memoirist (audio) , -​ˌwȯr-​ \ noun

Synonyms for memoir


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Examples of memoir in a Sentence

a retired politician who is writing his memoirs He has written a memoir of his mother. a memoir of Hollywood in the 1930s
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Recent Examples on the Web What is the Broadway musical-inspired title of the memoir? Aj Willingham, CNN, "5 things to know for January 31: Coronavirus, impeachment, US military, Mexico, guns," 31 Jan. 2020 The events Thomas chronicles in his memoir, My Grandfather’s Son, come to life in Michael Pack’s upcoming documentary Created Equal: Clarence Thomas In His Own Words. Nr Interview, National Review, "Clarence Thomas in His Own Words: An Interview with Michael Pack," 30 Jan. 2020 Obama, 56, was not at the awards show on Sunday to accept her award for the audio version of her memoir, which was released in November 2018. Caitlin Yilek, Washington Examiner, "Michelle Obama wins Grammy," 27 Jan. 2020 This story appears in the February 2020 issue of Marie Claire subscribe here Jen Doll Jen Doll is a freelance journalist and the author of the memoir Save the Date: The Occasional Mortifications of a Serial Wedding Guest. Jen Doll, Marie Claire, "Shan-Lyn Ma Is Here to Save Your Wedding," 20 Jan. 2020 Woven among the facts are bits of memoir: the narrator, who suffers from depression, tries to get pregnant, and succeeds. Katy Waldman, The New Yorker, "“The Crying Book” Reveals How Tears Can Help Us, and How They Can’t," 8 Jan. 2020 Elizabeth Wurtzel, the acclaimed author who sparked a surge of memoir writing with her book Prozac Nation, died on Tuesday at the age of 52. Nick Romano,, "Elizabeth Wurtzel, acclaimed Prozac Nation author, dies at 52," 7 Jan. 2020 She is currently nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for her work on the audiobook adaptation of her memoir. Sarah Midkiff,, "Michelle Obama Is 2019’s Most Admired Woman, Of Course," 2 Jan. 2020 One revelation of the memoir is that the public hasn’t been given a ton to think, good or bad, about Harry over the years. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Debbie Harry Stares Back," 12 Oct. 2019

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

1571, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for memoir

Middle French memoire, from memoire memory, from Latin memoria

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Time Traveler for memoir

Time Traveler

The first known use of memoir was in 1571

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Statistics for memoir

Last Updated

4 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Memoir.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for memoir


How to pronounce memoir (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of memoir

: a written account in which someone (such as a famous performer or politician) describes past experiences
: a written account of someone or something that is usually based on personal knowledge of the subject

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