post·​bel·​lum ˌpōs(t)-ˈbe-ləm How to pronounce postbellum (audio)
: of, relating to, or characteristic of the period following a war and especially following the American Civil War

Examples of postbellum in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The novel invites us to speculate about the resonances between the postbellum era and our own, but they’re not easily identified. Maggie Doherty, The New Republic, 16 June 2023 In this case, hookworm infection deleteriously affected the agricultural output and economic development of the postbellum South. Rebecca Kreston, Discover Magazine, 25 Apr. 2011 How did hookworm shape the economics of the postbellum southern United States? Rebecca Kreston, Discover Magazine, 23 Apr. 2013 Greenidge is the author of an earlier, prizewinning study of another leader of the postbellum Black community, William Monroe Trotter, who had an often close but fraught relationship with Archibald Grimke. Drew Gilpin Faust, The Atlantic, 8 Nov. 2022 The court repeatedly targeted postbellum civil rights laws, paving the way for Jim Crow. Ian MacDougall, Harper’s Magazine , 28 Sep. 2022 For a prosperous Black man in postbellum Arkansas, there are plenty of good reasons to shut out curious strangers. Noel Murray, Los Angeles Times, 3 Feb. 2022 Kelley’s career, together with that of his yet more radical daughter, Florence, epitomized the emerging cause of social democracy in the postbellum political world. Chris Lehmann, The New Republic, 21 June 2021 This was the dawning of a new and fragile postbellum pluralism, grounded not in pure reason but in mutual détente. Vinson Cunningham, The New Yorker, 28 Dec. 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'postbellum.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin post bellum after the war

First Known Use

1874, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of postbellum was in 1874

Dictionary Entries Near postbellum

Cite this Entry

“Postbellum.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Apr. 2024.

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