rap·​ture | \ˈrap-chər \

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 , 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


We listened with rapture as the orchestra played. He listened to the wind in the trees, his eyes closed in rapture.


nature lovers will be raptured by the documentary's breathtaking cinematography
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

That was my first taste of the rapture that is giving away baby things. Elyssa Friedland, chicagotribune.com, "We were drowning in diapers and scheduling sex. But then we got our groove back.," 9 June 2018 Then, in the 81st minute, Vecino headed home from a corner to send Inter into raptures, and Lazio into desperation. SI.com, "Lazio 2-3 Inter: Stunning Inter Comeback Breaks Lazio Hearts & Seals Champions League Qualification," 20 May 2018 That sent Peru’s marvelous traveling fanbase into rapture and left them feeling good about one of the defining feel-good stories of the tournament. Grant Wahl, SI.com, "Argentina Gets a Clean World Cup Slate After Marcos Rojo's Heroic Volley," 26 June 2018 But Ronaldo, at 33, knows this is definitely his last realistic shot, both to send his country into rapture and to answer soccer’s burning question of who is personally better. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "This World Cup makes it official: Cristiano Ronaldo is greater than Lionel Messi," 22 June 2018 Other theories over the years have involved falling rocks, kidnapping, even a kind of rapture (the second season of The Leftovers, which also deals with missing teenage girls, is in part an homage to the film). Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "Picnic at Hanging Rock," 29 May 2018 Salah converted a 95th minute penalty to send his nation into raptures. SI.com, "Egypt Hopeful of Having Salah to Navigate Manageable World Cup Group," 30 May 2018 While he was largely uncredited until the Internet age, his posters offered moviegoers tantalizing glimpses of the raptures awaiting in the cinema darkness. Robert D. Mcfadden, BostonGlobe.com, "Bill Gold, 97; his posters captured movie magic," 22 May 2018 But streaming the platform’s detective shows brings a particular rapture. Virginia Heffernan, WIRED, "The Truth-Affirming Powers of a Good, Old-Fashioned Netflix Binge," 23 May 2018

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

The first known use of rapture was in 1594

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More Definitions for rapture



English Language Learners Definition of rapture

: a state or feeling of great happiness, pleasure, or love


rap·​ture | \ˈrap-chər \

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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