\ˈmäsk \

Definition of mosque 

: a building used for public worship by Muslims

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Did You Know?

Mosques were known to the English-speaking world long before we called them mosques. In the 15th, 16th, and 17th centuries, we used many different variations of the word - moseak, muskey, moschy, mos’keh, among others - until we finally hit on mosquee, emulating Middle French. The Middle French word had come by way of Italian and Old Spanish from the Arabic word for "temple," which is masjid. In the early 1700s, we settled on the present spelling, and mosque thus joined other English words related to Muslim worship: mihrab, for the special niche in a mosque that points towards Mecca; minaret, for the tall slender tower of a mosque; and muezzin, for the crier who, standing in the minaret, calls the hour of daily prayers.

Examples of mosque in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The sacred space of a mosque is evoked, as well as the space-module curves of futuristic ’60s mod. Laura Jacobs, WSJ, "‘Contemporary Muslim Fashions’ Review: Eye-Catching Modesty," 19 Sep. 2018 In Istanbul, friends of the dissident journalist held a funeral ceremony outside the Fatih mosque Friday, symbolically gathering around an empty marble coffin stone to highlight the absence of Mr. Khashoggi’s body. Margherita Stancati, WSJ, "Turkey Claims More Audio Evidence Contradicts Saudis on Khashoggi Death," 16 Nov. 2018 The art, the cards, the mosque tiles, and the rubies all have that classic Istanbul feel to them. Nate Anderson, Ars Technica, "Istanbul: The Dice Game," 20 Oct. 2018 Hussain, the informant, posed as a wealthy Muslim radical, was the central prosecution witness in a 2004 federal sting focusing on a pizzeria owner and an imam at an Albany mosque. Luis FerrÉ-sadurnÍ, The Seattle Times, "Firm That Owned Limo in Deadly Crash Repeatedly Failed Inspections," 8 Oct. 2018 On Thursday, the court also decided not to reconsider a 1994 decision that would have delayed proceedings in a case over the ownership of a site of a mosque that Hindu hardliners demolished in 1992. Ashok Sharma, Fox News, "India chief justice's new decision strikes down adultery law," 28 Sep. 2018 Hopffgarten, who was also a Shriner, painted desert palms and Greek columns, ancient Egyptian ruins, a Sphinx, women carrying water, a mysterious mosque. Maria L. La Ganga, idahostatesman, "What’s behind ’60s-era paneling at El Korah Shrine? A ballroom’s worth of ’20s art.," 12 July 2018 Victims of the mosque attack had to be transported to a hospital in Maiduguri. New York Times, "A Homecoming for Nigerians Who Fled Militants. All That’s Missing Is the ‘Home.’," 10 July 2018 The tour takes in the markets and mosques of Old Delhi, the imperial city of New Delhi, the Taj Mahal and Jaipur's pink palaces. Rosemary Mcclure,, "10-day budget tour of India, including airfare from L.A., for $1,500," 4 July 2018

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

1585, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for mosque

earlier mosquee, from Middle French, from Old Italian moschea, from Old Spanish mezquita, from Arabic masjid temple, from sajada to prostrate oneself, worship

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Statistics for mosque

Last Updated

9 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for mosque

The first known use of mosque was in 1585

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More Definitions for mosque



English Language Learners Definition of mosque

: a building that is used for Muslim religious services


\ˈmäsk \

Kids Definition of mosque

: a building in which Muslims worship

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More from Merriam-Webster on mosque

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with mosque

Spanish Central: Translation of mosque

Nglish: Translation of mosque for Spanish Speakers

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

Comments on mosque

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


to enclose within walls

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