preach

verb
\ ˈprēch How to pronounce preach (audio) \
preached; preaching; preaches

Definition of preach

intransitive verb

1 : to deliver a sermon
2 : to urge acceptance or abandonment of an idea or course of action specifically : to exhort in an officious or tiresome manner

transitive verb

1 : to set forth in a sermon preach the gospel
2 : to advocate earnestly preached revolution
3 : to deliver (something, such as a sermon) publicly
4 : to bring, put, or affect by preaching preached the … church out of debtAmer. Guide Series: Va.

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from preach

preacher noun
preachingly \ ˈprē-​chiŋ-​lē How to pronounce preachingly (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for preach

Synonyms

sermonize

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of preach in a Sentence

Have you ever heard that minister preach? The minister preached to the congregation about the need for tolerance. His followers listened to him preach the gospel. The priest preached a regular sermon that Sunday. Their mother has always preached the value of a good education. Practice what you preach—don't smoke if you tell your children not to smoke. The mayor continues to preach about the need for patience. I don't like being preached at about how I should live my life.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

The most important part of ministry isn’t necessarily preaching, but listening. Tara Isabella Burton, Vox, "How faith leaders respond to tragedies like the California wildfires," 21 Nov. 2018 Minter’s is an unsubtle art that preaches to the choir. Charles Desmarais, SFChronicle.com, "Charles Desmarais’ art picks for June 24," 22 June 2018 During the campaign, the Association of Catholic Priests urged its members not to preach politics from the pulpit. New York Times, "Ireland Votes to End Abortion Ban, in Rebuke to Catholic Conservatism," 26 May 2018 Colts General Manager Chris Ballard has preached about building through the draft. Matthew Vantryon, Indianapolis Star, "People absolutely love Chris Ballard after Colts trade with Jets," 17 Mar. 2018 How could a tastemaker who preached the gospel of modernism become a convert to the baubles and trimmings of postmodernism? Mary Ann Gwinn, The Seattle Times, "A closer look at three National Book Critics Circle finalists," 20 Feb. 2019 Related The archbishop, who had preached passionately against military violence, political repression and economic inequities, was immediately upon his death revered as a martyr by devotees in his country and abroad. Francis X. Rocca, WSJ, "Pope Grants Sainthood to El Salvador’s Martyred Archbishop Romero," 14 Oct. 2018 The ordinance would not prohibit churches from preaching, ministering or otherwise speaking about the issue. Jeff Rumage, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Shorewood might ban gay conversion therapy, following the lead of dozens of other cities," 8 May 2018 Roseanne Barr's acerbic and biting humor was candid, the Conners didn't try to impress or preach from a moral high ground, and the real-life problems faced by the characters were incredibly relatable. refinery29.com, "All The Best Celeb Appearances On Roseanne To Get You Ready For The Reboot," 26 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'preach.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of preach

13th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for preach

Middle English prechen, from Anglo-French precher, from Late Latin praedicare, from Latin, to proclaim, make known, from prae- pre- + dicare to proclaim — more at diction

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about preach

Statistics for preach

Last Updated

13 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for preach

The first known use of preach was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for preach

preach

verb

English Language Learners Definition of preach

: to make a speech about religion in a church or other public place : to deliver a sermon
: to write or speak about (something) in an approving way : to say that (something) is good or necessary
: to write or speak in an annoying way about the right way to behave

preach

verb
\ ˈprēch How to pronounce preach (audio) \
preached; preaching

Kids Definition of preach

1 : to give a sermon
2 : to urge publicly preach patience

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on preach

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with preach

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for preach

Spanish Central: Translation of preach

Nglish: Translation of preach for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of preach for Arabic Speakers

Comments on preach

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

WORD OF THE DAY

likely to have or produce good results

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!