rap·​ture | \ ˈrap-chər How to pronounce rapture (audio) \

Definition of rapture

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an expression or manifestation of ecstasy or passion
2a : a state or experience of being carried away by overwhelming emotion
b : a mystical experience in which the spirit is exalted to a knowledge of divine things
3 often capitalized : the final assumption of Christians into heaven during the end-time according to Christian theology


raptured; rapturing

Definition of rapture (Entry 2 of 2)

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Other Words from rapture


rapturous \ ˈrap-​chə-​rəs How to pronounce rapturous (audio) , ˈrap-​shrəs \ adjective
rapturously adverb
rapturousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for rapture


ecstasy, rapture, transport mean intense exaltation of mind and feelings. ecstasy and rapture both suggest a state of trance or near immobility produced by an overpowering emotion. ecstasy may apply to any strong emotion (such as joy, fear, rage, adoration). religious ecstasy rapture usually implies intense bliss or beatitude. in speechless rapture transport applies to any powerful emotion that lifts one out of oneself and usually provokes vehement expression or frenzied action. in a transport of rage

Examples of rapture in a Sentence

Noun We listened with rapture as the orchestra played. He listened to the wind in the trees, his eyes closed in rapture. Verb nature lovers will be raptured by the documentary's breathtaking cinematography
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun There was, though, just enough rapture and climax to indicate that something out there just beyond your grasp. Los Angeles Times, "Review: A shy Siberian conductor in Berlin may be just what the music world needs," 28 Aug. 2019 The Etihad is in raptures as an emotional Zaba celebrates with his adoring fans. SI.com, "Manchester City 3-2 QPR: You'll Never See Anything Like This Ever Again," 28 Oct. 2019 Joseph Smith unearthed his Mormon tablets in northern hills; the Millerites inveighed about apocalyptic rapture; and the Fox sisters communed with ghosts in their Hydesville farmhouse. Sam Kestenbaum, New York Times, "Till Seth Do Us Part," 29 Oct. 2019 However, undeterred, Batshuayi came back again, only this time managing to direct a thunderous close-range effort into the back of the net via the crossbar in the dying embers, in turn sending the travelling faithful into raptures. SI.com, "Michy Batshuayi Is the Real 'Super Sub' at Chelsea After His Match Winning Cameo Against Ajax," 23 Oct. 2019 Portrait of a Lady on Fire Over the last six years, Blue is the Warmest Color, Carol, and The Handmaiden have all come through Cannes; each mining both the complexities and the rapture of lesbian love more compellingly than the last. Marley Marius, Vogue, "5 Under-the-Radar Cannes Films Critics Are Buzzing About," 23 May 2019 With the assistance of composer, singer and percussionist Jodie Landau and spectacular clarinetist Brian Walsh, here moody, Folick began her numbers in breathy introspection and rose toward rapture. Los Angeles Times, "Review: At Descanso Gardens, music meets nature and ‘Silence’ means many things," 8 Sep. 2019 There was a smattering of applause, and then dozens of flashbulbs began popping as cameramen took pictures of a vast sea of faces held perfectly still at the same upturned angle and frozen into identical expressions of rapture and awe. Charles Bethea, The New Yorker, "East Eighty-eighth Street and East End Avenue," 25 May 2018 Its reception was tepid compared to the rapture that greeted BBC's Fleabag that July. Michael O'connell, The Hollywood Reporter, "From 'Fleabag' to James Bond and Beyond: Phoebe Waller-Bridge on Death and Her Secret New Movie," 14 Aug. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Monk’s story is peppered with supernatural details, talk of evil spirits and unaccountable noises, and even an extremely old nun who may or may not rapture herself to heaven daily. Mike Mariani, Slate Magazine, "Nativism, Violence, and the Origins of the Paranoid Style," 22 Mar. 2017 At this time of year, Linnaeus had reached the farthest and most remote part of his journey, an alpine region, where he was driven to rapture by the diversity of flowering plants. James Prosek, New York Times, "A Botanist in Swedish Lapland," 16 May 2017

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


1594, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1637, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for rapture


Latin raptus

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Time Traveler for rapture

Time Traveler

The first known use of rapture was in 1594

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Statistics for rapture

Last Updated

23 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Rapture.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rapture. Accessed 18 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for rapture


How to pronounce rapture (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of rapture

literary + formal : a state or feeling of great happiness, pleasure, or love


rap·​ture | \ ˈrap-chər How to pronounce rapture (audio) \

Kids Definition of rapture

: a strong feeling of joy, delight, or love

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More from Merriam-Webster on rapture

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for rapture

Spanish Central: Translation of rapture

Nglish: Translation of rapture for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of rapture for Arabic Speakers

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