or·​phan·​age | \ˈȯr-fə-nij, ˈȯrf-nij\

Definition of orphanage 

1 : the state of being an orphan

2 : an institution for the care of orphans

Examples of orphanage in a Sentence

After the death of his parents, he was raised in an orphanage.

Recent Examples on the Web

While visiting an orphanage in Bangladesh in 1991, Cindy came across baby Bridget who suffered from a severe cleft palette as well as a congenital heart condition. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "How John McCain's Children Were Shaped by His Political Career," 27 Aug. 2018 Parents starved for food are abandoning children at orphanages. Fox News, "Lynne Patton responds to Omarosa audio tape," 15 Aug. 2018 Zia was convicted in February of misusing power by embezzling some $250,000 in donations meant for an orphanage trust. Washington Post, "Bangladesh opposition leader Zia critically ill, aide says," 19 June 2018 Miller became a lifelong volunteer at the orphanage to improve children's lives. Chris Mayhew, Cincinnati.com, "A NKY Fourth of July: Where to watch fireworks and parades," 28 June 2018 Maybe there’s also a bigger purpose in store for a kid who was nearly lost in the shuffle at an orphanage more than a decade ago. J.c. Carnahan, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Lake Brantley tailback Amani Brown thrives despite losing right foot as a child," 15 June 2018 His parole officers told him about Camp NORA, a transitional facility for homeless veterans that was soon to open at a former orphanage on a beautiful piece of property in the rural Barker's Corner community, north of Covington. Melinda Morris, NOLA.com, "Louisiana soldier killed during training in Texas is laid to rest: report," 28 May 2018 Adults went to prison-like detention centers, their children to less restrictive facilities akin to orphanages, all to wait indefinitely for judges to hear their cases. Jennifer Epstein, Bloomberg.com, "Trump Policy Sows Confusion and Anxiety Across the Mexican Border," 28 June 2018 The brothers had rented a bounce house and brought it to an orphanage in their home country. Robert Philpot, star-telegram, "A Dallas-based company is aiming for a vertical revolution in farming," 28 June 2018

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

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for orphanage

orphan entry 1 + -age, after Middle Frenchorphelinage

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Statistics for orphanage

Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for orphanage

The first known use of orphanage was in 1579

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English Language Learners Definition of orphanage

: a place where children whose parents have died can live and be cared for : a home for orphans


or·​phan·​age | \ˈȯr-fə-nij \

Kids Definition of orphanage

: a place where children who have lost their parents live and are cared for

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More from Merriam-Webster on orphanage

Spanish Central: Translation of orphanage

Nglish: Translation of orphanage for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of orphanage for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about orphanage

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