pos·​ter·​i·​ty | \ pä-ˈster-ə-tē How to pronounce posterity (audio) \

Definition of posterity

1 : the offspring of one progenitor to the furthest generation
2 : all future generations

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Synonyms for posterity


fruit, get, issue, offspring, progeny, seed, spawn

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Examples of posterity in a Sentence

Her broad aim is to reconcile the image of Johnson—the clubbable man, loved by posterity as well as by his contemporaries—and the man racked by disease and tormented by his fear of madness. — Frank Kermode, New York Review of Books, 22 June 2006 Posterity looks for hooks to hang old reputations on … — John Updike, New York Review of Books, 15 July 2004 The restructuring of the New York Yankees began five days after that broken-bat bloop by Luis Gonzalez parachuted to posterity behind second base, clinching the World Series for the Arizona Diamondbacks and breaking the Yankees' run of three titles. — Tom Verducci, Sports Illustrated, 24-31 Dec. 2001 It was puzzling to own trees—they were not owned the way a business is owned or even a house is owned. If anything, they were held in trust. In trust. Yes, for all of posterity, beginning with Merry and her kids. — Philip Roth, American Pastoral, 1997 Posterity will remember her as a woman of courage and integrity. A record of the events was preserved for posterity. The truth about what happened will be known to posterity.
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Recent Examples on the Web

For example, most people used to take photographs in order to document something for themselves and for posterity. Hua Hsu, The New Yorker, "Instagram, Facebook, and the Perils of “Sharenting”," 11 Sep. 2019 This is her testimony, recorded years later for posterity. Susan Straight, Los Angeles Times, "Review: ‘Handmaid’s Tale’ sequel ‘The Testaments’ puts Margaret Atwood’s powers on full display," 4 Sep. 2019 Sadly, the friend who Nyong’o tasked with capturing the moment for posterity dropped the ball, leaving the actress with a blurry photo. Julia Emmanuele,, "11 Hysterical, Awkward and Unforgettable Stories from Celebs Who Met Beyoncé," 4 Sep. 2019 As the curtains parted, the frenzied car aficionados raced to get out their smartphones to capture the moment for posterity. Neil Vigdor,, "Sale of rare Nazi-era Porsche sputters after Sotheby’s auction blunder," 19 Aug. 2019 The dangers of human and wild animal contact are well-documented—as is our desire to physically connect with wild animals and capture those encounters for posterity. Ali Wunderman, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why People Keep Trying to Pet Animals at National Parks," 7 Aug. 2019 Your book explores the equally unique challenge of preserving vintage games for posterity. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Losing yourself in virtual worlds can have good as well as negative effects," 17 July 2019 Only after Kennedy’s assassination did Lyndon Johnson double down on the Apollo program, and Jackie Kennedy tie her husband’s name to space travel for posterity by lobbying to have the space center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., named after him. Mark Whitaker, Washington Post, "The dreams and dedication behind our leap to the moon," 11 July 2019 Eaton suggested shooting some footage of the creative process, just for posterity. Amy Kaufman,, "The cantankerous glory of David Crosby, who hates Spotify, wants to reunite CSNY and saved at least $25,000 growing pot," 11 July 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for posterity

Middle English posterite, from Anglo-French pusterité, from Latin posteritat-, posteritas, from posterus coming after

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Statistics for posterity

Last Updated

14 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for posterity

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

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More Definitions for posterity



English Language Learners Definition of posterity

formal : people in the future


pos·​ter·​i·​ty | \ pä-ˈster-ə-tē How to pronounce posterity (audio) \

Kids Definition of posterity

: all future generations She'll be remembered by posterity.


pos·​ter·​i·​ty | \ pä-ˈster-ə-tē How to pronounce posterity (audio) \

Legal Definition of posterity

1 : all of the lineal descendants of a person
2 : all future generations

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More from Merriam-Webster on posterity

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with posterity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for posterity

Spanish Central: Translation of posterity

Nglish: Translation of posterity for Spanish Speakers

Comments on posterity

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


recurring in steady succession

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