pu·​ri·​ty | \ ˈpyu̇r-ə-tē How to pronounce purity (audio) \

Definition of purity

1 : the quality or state of being pure

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Examples of purity in a Sentence

struggling to live a life of purity while surrounded by wickedness

Recent Examples on the Web

Poetry, long thought to be the product of creative purity – and almost anti-capitalist in its unmarketability – becomes a tool for deception and self-promotion in Ives’ capable hands. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "Taking the male ego down a couple of notches," 13 June 2019 Wilentz casts the Garrisonians as naive dreamers whose ideological purity stymied their political influence. Nicholas Guyatt, The New York Review of Books, "How Proslavery Was the Constitution?," 6 June 2019 The Trump administration has said, for example, that America now has only one smelter that provides the high-purity aluminum that military aircraft require. Paul Wiseman, Washington Post, "Q&A: How Trump’s tariffs could affect people and companies," 6 Mar. 2018 Those harmonies, delivered in lush purity and wrenchingly emotional, make good songs better and make better songs great. Chuck Yarborough, cleveland.com, "Zac Brown Band gets Blossom’s summer concert season off to a rousing start," 15 June 2019 In Gilead, Handmaids are fertile women who have somehow violated the government’s religious purity laws. Constance Grady, Vox, "The Kylie Jenner Handmaid’s Tale controversy is part of a larger story," 12 June 2019 Mr Thanathorn’s political purity terrifies the establishment. The Economist, "The leader of the Thai junta tortures the rules to remain in power," 8 June 2019 Sectarians may find too little purity for their tastes, what with a flappy paddle gearbox and LDVI's electronic safety net. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "The Lamborghini Huracán Evo is actually proof of intelligent design," 7 June 2019 The purity level of fentanyl seized at land border crossings, by comparison, is generally less than 10% pure. Justin Rohrlich, Quartz, "Drug traffickers’ favorite way to move fentanyl is FedEx and USPS," 30 May 2019

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for purity

Middle English purete, from Anglo-French purité, from Late Latin puritat-, puritas, from Latin purus pure

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Statistics for purity

Last Updated

9 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for purity

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

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More Definitions for purity



English Language Learners Definition of purity

: lack of dirty or harmful substances
: lack of guilt or evil thoughts


pu·​ri·​ty | \ ˈpyu̇r-ə-tē How to pronounce purity (audio) \

Kids Definition of purity

1 : freedom from dirt or impurities
2 : freedom from sin or guilt


pu·​ri·​ty | \ ˈpyu̇r-ət-ē How to pronounce purity (audio) \

Medical Definition of purity

: the quality or state of being pure

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More from Merriam-Webster on purity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for purity

Spanish Central: Translation of purity

Nglish: Translation of purity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of purity for Arabic Speakers

Comments on purity

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


an act or instance of editing or removing

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