pil·​grim·​age | \ ˈpil-grə-mij How to pronounce pilgrimage (audio) \

Definition of pilgrimage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a journey of a pilgrim especially : one to a shrine or a sacred place
2 : the course of life on earth


pilgrimaged; pilgrimaging

Definition of pilgrimage (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to go on a pilgrimage

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Synonyms for pilgrimage

Synonyms: Verb

journey, peregrinate, tour, travel, trek, trip, voyage

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Examples of pilgrimage in a Sentence


He made a pilgrimage to Mecca. The tradition of pilgrimage is important in Islam. The family went on a pilgrimage to historical battlefields. The poet's grave site has become a place of pilgrimage.


tourists pilgrimaging to all of the traditional destinations across Europe
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The bear’s pilgrimage, some local environmentalists speculated, was likely undertaken out of starvation. Michele Moses, The New Yorker, "Why the Polar Bear Is the Undisputed Image of Climate Change," 23 June 2019 In the two decades since the School of Supernatural Ministry’s founding, more than 10,000 people from around the world have made the same pilgrimage, turning Redding into an unlikely global epicenter of Christian culture. Vanessa Rancano, The Mercury News, "How Redding became an unlikely epicenter of modern Christian culture," 19 June 2019 Within a decade of Musa’s pilgrimage, Mali and its king began to appear on European maps, most famously the 1375 Catalan Atlas, helping to lure Iberian fortune-seekers down the coast of Africa in search of the source of Musa’s gold. Howard W. French, The New York Review of Books, "Africa’s Lost Kingdoms," 17 June 2019 The governor of Mecca claims that the Qatari government is preventing its citizens from taking the annual pilgrimage, known as Hajj, to Mecca, Saudi Arabia. Jennie Neufeld, Vox, "Vox Sentences: The GOP puts the Kochs on ice," 4 Aug. 2018 So now, in 2019/20, Buffon will say his ten Our Fathers and ten Hail Marys and make the pilgrimage to the Virgin of Cobre with the hope that divine intervention will prevent the intangibles from going against him and his beloved Juventus. SI.com, "Gianluigi Buffon: The Old Man & the UEFA Champions League," 26 June 2019 Jay Inslee, who is making climate change the centerpiece of his campaign, made the traditional pilgrimage to the Everglades, a popular spot for candidates seeking to show their support for the environment. Anthony Man, sun-sentinel.com, "Presidential candidates flood into South Florida, beginning in the Everglades," 24 June 2019 If all goes well, the CEO makes the pilgrimage to the New York Stock Exchange or the Nasdaq to ring the bell on opening day and the company raises millions if not billions of dollars. Michael J. Coren, Quartz, "After Slack, the IPO market might never be the same," 19 June 2019 Every five years, veterans have made the pilgrimage back to Omaha Beach, Normandy, the site of the D-Day invasion that historians credit with expediting the defeat of Nazi Germany during World War II. Michael Waters, Smithsonian, "These Photos Capture the Poignancy of Past D-Day Commemorations," 5 June 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for pilgrimage

Last Updated

14 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pilgrimage

The first known use of pilgrimage was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for pilgrimage



English Language Learners Definition of pilgrimage

: a journey to a holy place
: a journey to a special or unusual place


pil·​grim·​age | \ ˈpil-grə-mij How to pronounce pilgrimage (audio) \

Kids Definition of pilgrimage

: a journey made by a pilgrim

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Comments on pilgrimage

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


characterized by aphorism

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