pro·​claim | \ prō-ˈklām How to pronounce proclaim (audio) , prə-\
proclaimed; proclaiming; proclaims

Definition of proclaim

transitive verb

1a : to declare publicly, typically insistently, proudly, or defiantly and in either speech or writing : announce
b : to give outward indication of : show his manner proclaimed his genteel upbringing
2 : to declare or declare to be solemnly, officially, or formally proclaim an amnesty proclaim the country a republic
3 : to praise or glorify openly or publicly : extol proclaimed the rescue workers' efforts

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Other Words from proclaim

proclaimer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for proclaim

declare, announce, proclaim, promulgate mean to make known publicly. declare implies explicitness and usually formality in making known. the referee declared the contest a draw announce implies the declaration of something for the first time. announced their engagement at a party proclaim implies declaring clearly, forcefully, and authoritatively. the president proclaimed a national day of mourning promulgate implies the proclaiming of a dogma, doctrine, or law. promulgated an edict of religious toleration

Did You Know?

The pro- in proclaim means "forward, out", so a proclamation is an "outward" statement intended for the public. We often think of proclamations as something issued by monarchs or dictators, but Lincoln was able to issue his Emancipation Proclamation because as president he had the power to free the slaves in certain areas. At a slightly lower level, a governor may proclaim a day in honor of the state's firemen, a movie critic may proclaim a director to be the best of all, or you may proclaim your New Year's resolutions to a crowd of friends.

Examples of proclaim in a Sentence

She proclaimed that she will run for governor. The President proclaimed a national day of mourning. He took command of the government and proclaimed himself emperor. The magazine proclaimed him to be the best player in baseball. He proclaimed his love for her in a poem. His behavior proclaimed his good upbringing.
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Recent Examples on the Web Its proponents proclaimed the need to improve the world rather than focusing on being saved in the next life – a common message espoused in most U.S. churches. David Mislin, The Conversation, "How Pete Buttigieg is reviving the pragmatic, progressive ideals of the Social Gospel movement," 7 Nov. 2019 Nope, there was no flag to plant or victory to proclaim. Michael Casagrande |, al, "How spontaneous ‘We comin’ remark sparked faith amid LSU’s Alabama struggles," 5 Nov. 2019 Taylor’s gesture to initiate a private chat with Green prior to proclaiming a new QB is notable. Tyler Dragon,, "Cincinnati Bengals WR A.J. Green on his health, his contract and his new quarterback," 30 Oct. 2019 The second, Marion Wilson, used his last words in June to proclaim his innocence in the murder of a Milledgeville man. Joshua Sharpe, ajc, "Parole board refuses to halt Georgia execution scheduled for Wednesday," 29 Oct. 2019 The zeal around the opening, and the lengths fans go to proclaim their Wegmans-philia, may confuse some New Yorkers. Amelia Nierenberg, New York Times, "Wegmans Opens in Brooklyn; Fans Wait in the Rain, and Rejoice," 27 Oct. 2019 North of the Alps, on the other hand, collections of curiosities tended to proclaim the wealth and power of their owners. Reagan Upshaw, Washington Post, "‘Cabinets of Curiosities’ delves into the history of collectors and their stunning, strange acquisitions," 24 Oct. 2019 Elmer's contribution to the Marine Industry of Fort Lauderdale led the City to proclaim September 4th as annual Elmer Strauss Day., "Deaths in South Florida: 10/12," 12 Oct. 2019 Brown’s proposed law would authorize the sitting President to annually proclaim the week of September 15 and 16 National Hispanic Heritage Week. National Geographic, "Everything you need to know about Hispanic Heritage Month," 4 Oct. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for proclaim

Middle English proclamen, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French proclamer, from Latin proclamare, from pro- before + clamare to cry out — more at pro-, claim

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Statistics for proclaim

Last Updated

12 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for proclaim

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

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More Definitions for proclaim


How to pronounce proclaim (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of proclaim

: to say or state (something) in a public, official, or definite way : to declare or announce (something)
formal : to show (something) clearly


pro·​claim | \ prō-ˈklām How to pronounce proclaim (audio) \
proclaimed; proclaiming

Kids Definition of proclaim

: to announce publicly : declare The president proclaimed a holiday.
pro·​claim | \ prō-ˈklām How to pronounce proclaim (audio) \

Legal Definition of proclaim

: to declare or declare to be solemnly, officially, or formally proclaim an amnesty

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to speed up the process or progress of

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