mo·​der·​ni·​ty mə-ˈdər-nə-tē How to pronounce modernity (audio)
-ˈder- How to pronounce modernity (audio)
: the quality or state of being or appearing to be modern
Such details as street lamps, telephone booths, mailboxes and manhole covers have been expensively recreated to recall a past that makes even young Hungarians nostalgic and Western tourists regret the flashy modernity of their cities.Henry Kamm
His early work portrayed the idiosyncratic behavior of his zany upper-class family whose wealth and quest for modernity impelled them to try out all the latest inventions and devices of the time, from electric razors to automobiles to flying machines.Naomi Rosenblum
: the modern era or world and especially the ideas and attitudes associated with the modern world
For all his conservatism, Henry Adams's encounter with modernity led neither to romantic antiquarianism … nor to an intensified commitment to those very liberal arts that were under siege in a market society.Peter N. Miller

Examples of modernity in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The development unfolds as a seamless blend of modernity and nature, where practicality aligns with the desire for something exceptional. Prime Development Land Company, Kansas City Star, 12 May 2024 The first-timer was eager to curate adorable outfits for her son but found the options lacking in style and modernity. Chris Gallagher, USA TODAY, 11 May 2024 Contemporary art curated by Liquid Art System adds a touch of modernity to the otherwise classic decor. Laura Itzkowitz, Travel + Leisure, 11 May 2024 This led into the Middle Ages, a time of intense lows (the Bubonic Plague) and, eventually, highs (the Renaissance, a transition into modernity). Jack Knudson, Discover Magazine, 10 May 2024 On the other side were Rousseau’s, who saw in prehistory—and its putative living representatives among non-Western societies—forms of egalitarianism and harmony that modernity had destroyed. Maya Jasanoff, The New Yorker, 6 May 2024 The only nod to modernity: a flat-screen TV mounted in the corner, where President Barack Obama was giving a live press conference. Sacramento Bee, 30 Jan. 2024 Cruyff’s signing was also an early sign as well of Catalonia’s headlong dash for modernity, after obliteration under arch conservative Francisco Franco’s dictatorship. John Hopewell, Variety, 24 Jan. 2024 Such a wonderfully unique purpose, so key to the country’s journey toward modernity. Hazlitt, 24 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'modernity.' 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

1635, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of modernity was in 1635

Dictionary Entries Near modernity

Cite this Entry

“Modernity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 May. 2024.

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