or·​phan·​age | \ ˈȯr-fə-nij How to pronounce orphanage (audio) , 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 After spending a year in an orphanage, she was adopted by a couple in Mumbai and brought to San Jose, California. Adrianne Morales, CNN, "An adopted 14-year-old girl is helping senior dogs find a forever home just like she did," 2 Aug. 2020 Adoption' and 'orphanage' are positive words in our home. Ally Mauch, PEOPLE.com, "Angelina Jolie Calls Daughter Zahara an 'Extraordinary African Woman': 'I Have Learned So Much From Her'," 11 July 2020 Based on his father's will, Colson moved to an orphanage in Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s capital and largest city. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Father's dying wish put him in an orphanage. Now he's Michigan football's best linebacker recruit," 27 June 2020 Eliza Hamilton really did start the first private orphanage in New York City. Andrea Wurzburger, PEOPLE.com, "10 Historical Easter Eggs from Hamilton You Might Have Missed," 8 July 2020 Later, she was transferred to another facility with an orphanage that housed hundreds of children, including those with parents detained for giving birth too many times. Bloomberg.com, "China Cuts Uighur Births With IUDs, Abortion, Sterilization," 1 July 2020 Time seemed to move slowly for Colson at the orphanage. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Father's dying wish put him in an orphanage. Now he's Michigan football's best linebacker recruit," 27 June 2020 Dwight Burton and Monik Kadarmanto, who live near Portland, in the US state of Oregon, began the adoption process in September 2018, and were matched with a three-year-old boy living at an orphanage in China just before Christmas. Emma Reynolds, CNN, "Some families have been kept apart by coronavirus. These families are still waiting to meet," 14 June 2020 Such names were banned in all orphanages only in 2012. The Economist, "Chaguan For people in China, adopting Chinese children is getting easier," 6 June 2020

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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Time Traveler for orphanage

Time Traveler

The first known use of orphanage was in 1579

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Statistics for orphanage

Last Updated

5 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Orphanage.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/orphanage. Accessed 8 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for orphanage


How to pronounce orphanage (audio)

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 How to pronounce orphanage (audio) \

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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