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

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Examples of pilgrimage in a Sentence

Noun He made a pilgrimage to Mecca. The family went on a pilgrimage to historical battlefields. The tradition of pilgrimage is important in Islam. The poet's grave site has become a place of pilgrimage. Verb tourists pilgrimaging to all of the traditional destinations across Europe
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Central to the show is a piece known as the Chalk Sculpture, a rendition of a pregnant woman that has become a pilgrimage site for women with fertility problems. Claire Messud, Harpers Magazine, "New Books," 5 Jan. 2021 Harold writes a short note back to his friend Queenie, who is now in a hospice, and his journey to the mailbox turns into an unplanned pilgrimage to deliver the response in person. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, "The Fast Forward 2020 Winter Bookies reading list," 4 Jan. 2021 Mount Popa, a sacred pilgrimage site, is also home to an important wildlife sanctuary -- but threats remain for the endangered Popa langurs. Jessie Yeung, CNN, "Scientists discover new endangered primate species, with only 260 left," 10 Nov. 2020 In the new study, Adrian Smith, a zoologist at the University of Oxford, and colleagues embarked on an ambitious parasitic pilgrimage. Michael Price, Science | AAAS, "Parasitic worms found in medieval human remains hold secret for eradicating them today," 1 Sep. 2020 Perhaps surprisingly, City Lights has become a place of pilgrimage for any Christmas aficionado, whom Young notes typically fall into one of two categories. Mark Ellwood, Condé Nast Traveler, "How San Diego Became the Unofficial Christmas Capital of America," 9 Dec. 2020 Karbala is home to the shrine of Imam Hussein, an important pilgrimage point for Shiites. Jon Gambrell, USA TODAY, "Iran executes journalist Ruhollah Zam, who encouraged 2017 protests, after abduction in Iraq," 13 Dec. 2020 No pilgrimage would be complete without a visit to the former department store, now JACK Cleveland Casino, which is featured in three scenes in the movie, including Ralphie’s disheartening encounter with Santa. cleveland, "Despite Indiana roots, Cleveland is forever home to ‘A Christmas Story’," 13 Dec. 2020 Karbala is home to the shrine of Imam Hussein, an important pilgrimage point for Shiites. Jon Gambrell, chicagotribune.com, "Iran executes exiled journalist who encouraged 2017 protests after luring him to Iraq and abducting him," 12 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The offerings were possibly linked to a cult of Inca ancestors, and to pilgrimage ceremonies that took place on the Island of the Sun. National Geographic, "Centuries-old Inca offering discovered in sacred lake," 4 Aug. 2020 An international ad campaign persuaded young people to pilgrimage across countries and continents to attend. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Why Woodstock Can Never Happen Again," 6 Aug. 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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Time Traveler for pilgrimage

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for pilgrimage

Last Updated

17 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Pilgrimage.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pilgrimage. Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for pilgrimage


How to pronounce pilgrimage (audio)

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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