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

Pilgrim Road was discovered in 2004 and includes wide stairs near the Shiloach, a water pool Jewish pilgrims immersed themselves in before ascending to the Temple. Marcy Oster, sun-sentinel.com, "Israeli left, Palestinians slam U.S. diplomats for inaugurating controversial tourist site in eastern Jerusalem," 2 July 2019 The roof was packed with tourists photographing Tokyo’s skyline or gazing down over Senso-ji, a sprawling Buddhist temple complex that is no less superlative than the city itself; millions of pilgrims and tourists visit each year. Neil Shea, National Geographic, "Tokyo became a megacity by reinventing itself," 12 June 2019 For centuries, the Grand Hôtel-Dieu functioned as a hospital for pilgrims and the poor, with a prominent location at the confluence of the Rhône and Saône rivers. Mary Winston Nicklin, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why Food Lovers Should Visit Lyon This Fall," 11 June 2019 This year’s Eurovision contest, which began Tuesday evening in Tel Aviv, is meant to mark an important step in Israel’s drive to become more than just a destination for pilgrims and Holy Land tourists. Felicia Schwartz And Dov Lieber, WSJ, "Eurovision Presents a Test for Israel’s Sunny Tourist Vision," 14 May 2019 Tens of thousands of faithful have been treated to gifts from the pontiff, tiny crucifixes, distributed by nuns, refugees and some of Rome's homeless and poor after the pope’s traditional Sunday appearance to pilgrims and tourists in the square. Nicole Winfield, Fox News, "Pope gives bishops more decision-making options," 18 Sep. 2018 Last September, 55 people died when a bus carrying pilgrims from a Hindu temple in the hills of south India plunged off a road. Washington Post, "39 killed as bus falls into deep gorge in northern India," 20 June 2019 The far right is in love with the Knights Templar (a military order of knights who protected pilgrims) and other Crusaders. Josephine Livingstone, The New Republic, "Who Owns the Crusades?," 11 June 2019 Such experiences, when the forces of nature can bring out new dimensions in a piece of art, a performer, or even a visitor, are something the art world is increasingly trying to offer cultural pilgrims around the world. James Florio, National Geographic, "See the wildest art destination in the West," 21 Mar. 2019

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

12 Jul 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

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