pil·​grim | \ ˈpil-grəm How to pronounce pilgrim (audio) \

Definition of pilgrim

1 : one who journeys in foreign lands : wayfarer
2 : one who travels to a shrine or holy place as a devotee
3 capitalized : one of the English colonists settling at Plymouth in 1620

Examples of pilgrim in a Sentence

Thousands of Muslim pilgrims traveled to Mecca.

Recent Examples on the Web

For the Bedouin, escorting travelers and pilgrims through the Sinai has a long history. Salma Islam, latimes.com, "A long-distance hiking trail in Egypt has reunited Bedouin tribes in the name of jobs and tourism," 21 June 2018 Police officers patrolled the steep cobblestone paths leading up to the abbey, packed with restaurants and souvenir shops — and normally packed with tourists and pilgrims 365 days a year. Sheila Norman-culp, The Seattle Times, "Tourists at iconic French abbey evacuated after threat," 22 Apr. 2018 After prayers in Mecca, pilgrims will head to an area called Mount Arafat on Monday, where the Prophet Muhammad delivered his final sermon. Omar Akour, Fox News, "Over 2 million Muslims begin annual hajj pilgrimage," 19 Aug. 2018 Amid shimmering waterfalls, pockmarked rocks and scraggly pines, tiny pilgrims make their way along narrow paths toward picturesque huts and famous sites. Lori Waxman, chicagotribune.com, "Xu Longsen's artistic reminder of the vastness of nature," 14 June 2018 In November, seven people were killed after gunmen attacked a bus carrying Coptic pilgrims to a remote monastery in Egypt’s Minya province. Jared Malsin, WSJ, "Blast at Cairo Church Kills Police Officer," 5 Jan. 2019 More than 1,100 people, almost all of them Muslim, were killed in the riots, which began after a train fire killed 60 Hindu pilgrims. Ashok Sharma, Fox News, "Former Indian PM Vajpayee dies after illness at age 93," 16 Aug. 2018 To the left is a porter's lodge, to the right a large bench on which pilgrims would sleep. Jim Berkeley, Town & Country, "How to Plan a Trip to Egypt," 5 Oct. 2016 Both Israel and the West Bank boast major Christian sites like Nazareth and Bethlehem, and the pilgrim trade is lucrative. Isabel Kershner, New York Times, "Clearing Land Mines From the Spot Where Jesus Is Said to Have Been Baptized," 1 Apr. 2018

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pilgrim

Middle English, from Anglo-French pelerin, pilegrin, from Late Latin pelegrinus, alteration of Latin peregrinus foreigner, from peregrinus, adjective, foreign, from peregri abroad, from per through + agr-, ager land — more at for, acre

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Statistics for pilgrim

Last Updated

22 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for pilgrim

The first known use of pilgrim was in the 13th century

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English Language Learners Definition of pilgrim

: someone who travels to a holy place
: one of the people who traveled by boat from England and created the first permanent settlement in New England at Plymouth in 1620


pil·​grim | \ ˈpil-grəm How to pronounce pilgrim (audio) \

Kids Definition of pilgrim

1 : a person who travels to a holy place as an act of religious devotion
2 capitalized : one of the English colonists who founded the first permanent settlement in New England at Plymouth in 1620

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More from Merriam-Webster on pilgrim

Spanish Central: Translation of pilgrim

Nglish: Translation of pilgrim for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pilgrim for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pilgrim

Comments on pilgrim

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


grandiloquent, ostentatious, or bombastic

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