re·​con·​struc·​tion | \ ˌrē-kən-ˈstrək-shən How to pronounce reconstruction (audio) \

Definition of reconstruction

1a : the action of reconstructing : the state of being reconstructed
b often capitalized : the reorganization and reestablishment of the seceded states in the Union after the American Civil War
2 : something reconstructed

Examples of reconstruction in a Sentence

the reconstruction of the dam the reconstruction of postwar Europe reconstruction of the health-care system They were able to determine the cause of the accident by careful reconstruction of the events leading up to it. The police staged a reconstruction of the crime.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Scientists have long sought to model ancient land use to accurately inform modern climate reconstructions and to set a start date for when humans first made their mark on the planet. Mohi Kumar, Science | AAAS, "Ancient farmers irreversibly altered Earth’s face by 3000 years ago," 30 Aug. 2019 Expect a long closure for crash investigation/reconstruction. oregonlive, "Crash closes U.S. 26 in rural Washington County," 30 Aug. 2019 This undated photo provided by the Cleveland Museum of Natural History in August 2019 shows a facial reconstruction model by John Gurche made from a fossilized cranium of Australopithecus anamensis. Washington Post, "Ethiopian fossil reveals face for ancestor of famed ‘Lucy’," 28 Aug. 2019 The Campbell County major accident reconstruction unit is investigating the crash. Sarah Brookbank,, "Police ID man killed in Northern Kentucky I-275 crash," 26 Aug. 2019 Slated to return to practice Monday is Jerick McKinnon, whose comeback from knee reconstruction was put on hold after a two-practice cameo. Cam Inman, The Mercury News, "How will Dante Pettis respond to 49ers Shanahan’s demands?," 25 Aug. 2019 Which is to be expected given his rapid return from last year’s elbow reconstruction. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Red Sox strike first, last to again drop Padres," 24 Aug. 2019 However, Humble ISD officials estimate the reconstruction at $35 million. Kaila Contreras, Houston Chronicle, "New Lakeland Elementary campus will open a year early in 2021 on Rustic Timbers Drive," 16 Aug. 2019 The New York region has funnelled $1bn out of a reconstruction budget of $60bn to such experiments in Sandy’s wake. The Economist, "One way or another the deluge is coming," 15 Aug. 2019

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

1594, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for reconstruction

Last Updated

2 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for reconstruction

The first known use of reconstruction was in 1594

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English Language Learners Definition of reconstruction

: the act or process of building something that was damaged or destroyed again
: the process of putting something (such as a country) back into a good condition
: a process in which an event or series of events is carefully examined in order to find out or show exactly what happened


re·​con·​struc·​tion | \ ˌrē-kən-ˈstrək-shən How to pronounce reconstruction (audio) \

Medical Definition of reconstruction

: repair of an organ or part by reconstructive surgery breast reconstruction



Legal Definition of reconstruction

1 : a rebuilding of a nonfunctional patented article that amounts to creation of a new article and constitutes infringement of the patent the complete replacement of the mechanism was a reconstruction and not a repair
2 : the practice or process of recreating an incident (as an accident) for the purpose of investigating the specific facts and circumstances surrounding it heard testimony on the speed of the vehicle from an expert in accident reconstruction

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Comments on reconstruction

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to spread over or through

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