\ ˈmäsk How to pronounce mosque (audio) \

Definition of mosque

: a building used for public worship by Muslims

Keep scrolling for more

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

Prince William, Kate Middleton, Prince Harry, and Meghan Markle responded to the shooting at two mosques that killed 49 people in Christchurch, New Zealand yesterday. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kate Middleton, Prince William, Meghan Markle, and Prince Harry Respond to the Tragic Shootings in New Zealand," 15 Mar. 2019 News broke this morning that two mosques in New Zealand had been attacked by a gunman. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "The Royal Family Sends Condolences to the Families and Victims of the New Zealand Shootings," 15 Mar. 2019 As the siege continued, villagers tried to march toward mosque in solidarity with the rebels, leading to clashes between stone-throwing protesters and government forces who deployed tear smoke shells and pellets. Fox News, "Clashes erupt around Kashmir after Indian troops kill man," 27 Sep. 2018 It was followed by the May bombing of a concert hall in Manchester, a June attack on London Bridge and Borough Market and an attack in the same month on a mosque in Finsbury Park. Fox News, "Inquest hears attacker near UK Parliament had violent past," 19 Sep. 2018 The country has been hit with several attacks, particularly on the Sinai Peninsula, where a bomb and gun attack on a mosque killed more than 300 people in November. Sheena Mckenzie And Mohammed Tawfeeq, CNN, "Egypt elections: Polls open as Sisi faces little contest," 26 Mar. 2018 Part of this interview took place in Tlaib’s community mosque—a symbolic point for Muslim women fighting sexism inside and outside the faith. Jennifer Chowdhury, Marie Claire, "Why Ilhan Omar's Victory Speech Starting With an Islamic Greeting Is So Important," 9 Nov. 2018 Only a week ago, the Islamic State attacked a Shia mosque in Kabul. Maija Liuhto, Longreads, "A Music So Beautiful the Birds Fell from the Trees," 28 June 2018 But Ahmed said Bruchey is welcome to the mosque to learn more about his Muslim constituents. Julie Zauzmer, Washington Post, "Maryland mayor criticized for calling London’s Muslim mayor a ‘terrorist’," 12 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.

See More

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about mosque

Listen to Our Podcast about mosque

Statistics for mosque

Last Updated

18 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for mosque

The first known use of mosque was in 1585

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for mosque



English Language Learners Definition of mosque

: a building that is used for Muslim religious services


\ ˈmäsk How to pronounce mosque (audio) \

Kids Definition of mosque

: a building in which Muslims worship

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on mosque

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with mosque

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for 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).


the range of authority or knowledge

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt-painting-a-young-scholar-and-his-tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Add Diction

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


Love words? Need even more definitions?

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