mourned; mourning; mourns

intransitive verb

: to feel or express grief or sorrow
When he dies, people throughout the world will mourn.
: to show the customary signs of grief for a death
especially : to wear mourning
mourned for thirty days in black clothes
: to murmur mournfully
used especially of doves

transitive verb

: to feel or express grief or sorrow for
mourned the death of his son
: to utter mournfully
let the whirlwind mourn its requiemW. S. Gilbert
mourner noun
mourningly adverb

Examples of mourn in a Sentence

She is still mourning her husband, who died last year. Thousands of people mourned his death. She was mourned by everyone who knew her. She mourned the loss of her youth. He still mourns the fact that he never went to college.
Recent Examples on the Web Advertisement Like Hamlet, Juicy is mourning the recent death of his father, Pap (Billy Eugene Jones). Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times, 8 Apr. 2024 When Toby Keith died of cancer on Feb. 5 at age 62, the country world mourned the loss of one of its biggest stars. Joe Lynch, The Hollywood Reporter, 8 Apr. 2024 Lauri Peterson is mourning the death of her son Joshua-Michael Waring. Wesley Stenzel,, 6 Apr. 2024 José Andrés, the award-winning chef and food philanthropist, is mourning the deaths of seven aid workers from his nonprofit World Central Kitchen, who were killed in an Israeli airstrike in the Gaza Strip on April 1. Sunny Nagpaul, Fortune, 5 Apr. 2024 Stephen Colbert is mourning the death of one of his colleagues. Ingrid Vasquez, Peoplemag, 4 Apr. 2024 Some of the biggest names in comedy are mourning Joe Flaherty. Tomás Mier, Rolling Stone, 2 Apr. 2024 Jewish Federations mourn his passing, and our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time. Melissa Gaffney, ABC News, 27 Mar. 2024 Toby Keith has only been gone for less than two months, and many fans of the late superstar are still mourning. Hugh McIntyre, Forbes, 27 Mar. 2024

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

Word History


Middle English, from Old English murnan; akin to Old High German mornēn to mourn, Greek mermēra care — more at memory

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of mourn was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near mourn

Cite this Entry

“Mourn.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


ˈmō(ə)rn How to pronounce mourn (audio)
: to feel or show grief or sorrow especially over someone's death
: to display the customary signs of grief for a death especially by wearing mourning
mourner noun

More from Merriam-Webster on mourn

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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