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mil·​le·​nar·​i·​an ˌmi-lə-ˈner-ē-ən How to pronounce millenarian (audio)
: of or relating to belief in a millennium
: of or relating to 1000 years


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: one that believes in a millennium

Examples of millenarian in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
The latter — driven by an apocalyptic, millenarian creed — had embarked on a frenzy of killing, torture, grisly execution and abductions of civilians from communities of supposed apostates and enemies. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, 25 Oct. 2023 Many rebellions against China’s official rulers came from millenarian groups and religious cults that sprang up among the oppressed. Ian Buruma, The New Yorker, 25 Sep. 2023 Carlson is practically millenarian. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 16 Sep. 2021 America, in his presidency, was an assertive participant in the world—beating back communist encroachment in Latin America and calling the Soviets’ bluff in the Cold War arms race—but without George W. Bush’s millenarian overreach. Tunku Varadarajan, WSJ, 13 Jan. 2023 The fundamentalist mind-set is apocalyptic and millenarian. Masha Gessen, The New Yorker, 1 Nov. 2022 The centerpiece of this millenarian fantasy is the 57,000-square-feet, three-story sandstone temple being constructed in Ayodhya. Seyward Darby, Longreads, 13 Apr. 2022 The hair-shirt approach advocated by progressive opinion in the advanced world reflects the quasi-millenarian thinking so characteristic of many climate warriors and the command-and-control instincts of the modern governing class. The Editors, National Review, 13 Aug. 2021 Apocalyptic or millenarian thinking is a fixture in the homeless community. James Parker, The Atlantic, 10 June 2020
In his view, the early Bolsheviks—a closed group of compulsive readers, prolific writers, and utopian thinkers—were an apocalyptic sect, fervent and coercive proselytizers Slezkine likens to various millenarians, such as Münster Anabaptists or Branch Davidians. Yuri Slezkine, Foreign Affairs, 6 Sep. 2022 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use


1626, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1661, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of millenarian was in 1626

Dictionary Entries Near millenarian

Cite this Entry

“Millenarian.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

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