sacrifice

noun
sac·​ri·​fice | \ ˈsa-krə-ˌfīs How to pronounce sacrifice (audio) also -fəs or -ˌfīz \

Definition of sacrifice

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an act of offering to a deity something precious especially : the killing of a victim on an altar
2 : something offered in sacrifice
3a : destruction or surrender of something for the sake of something else
b : something given up or lost the sacrifices made by parents
4 : loss goods sold at a sacrifice

sacrifice

verb
sacrificed; sacrificing

Definition of sacrifice (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to offer as a sacrifice
2 : to suffer loss of, give up, renounce, injure, or destroy especially for an ideal, belief, or end
3 : to sell at a loss
4 : to advance (a base runner) by means of a sacrifice bunt
5 : to kill (an animal) as part of a scientific experiment

intransitive verb

1 : to make or perform the rites of a sacrifice
2 : to make a sacrifice hit in baseball

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Other Words from sacrifice

Verb

sacrificer noun

Synonyms for sacrifice

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of sacrifice in a Sentence

Noun The war required everyone to make sacrifices. No sacrifice is too great when it comes to her children. He made many personal sacrifices to provide help to the city's homeless people. The war required much sacrifice from everyone. a place where priests performed human sacrifices in ancient rituals The villagers hoped the gods would accept their sacrifice. The goat was offered as a sacrifice. The runner went to second base on a sacrifice. Verb She's had to sacrifice a lot for her family. He sacrificed his personal life in order to get ahead in his career. I want to follow a diet that is healthful without sacrificing taste. She was able to ask for their help without sacrificing her dignity. She was willing to suffer, sacrifice, and work for success. a place where people were sacrificed in ancient rituals He sacrificed in his first at bat.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Across California, local officials have reminded people that the fate of the virus lies in their behavior and asked for one more round of shared sacrifice. Brian Melley, Anchorage Daily News, "Once a model, California now struggles to tame COVID-19," 2 Jan. 2021 Across California, local officials have reminded people that the fate of the virus lies in their behavior and asked for one more round of shared sacrifice. Brian Melley, ajc, "Once a model, California now struggles to tame COVID-19," 1 Jan. 2021 Austin Barnes, the Dodgers' No. 9 hitter, added a sixth-inning homer against John Curtiss and became just the second player to drive in runs with both a homer and a sacrifice bunt in the same Series game. Ronald Blum, courant.com, "Buehler leads Dodgers over Rays 6-2 for 2-1 Series lead," 23 Oct. 2020 Austin Barnes, the Dodgers’ No. 9 hitter, added a sixth-inning homer against John Curtiss and became just the second player to drive in runs with both a homer and a sacrifice bunt in the same Series game. Ronald Blum, Chron, "Walker Buehler leads Dodgers over Rays for 2-1 World Series lead," 23 Oct. 2020 Manuel Margot, whose three-run homer in Game 2 followed the first of Altuve’s two errors, laid down Tampa Bay’s first sacrifice bunt of the season. Bernie Wilson, orlandosentinel.com, "Rays beat Astros 5-2, move within 1 victory of World Series," 14 Oct. 2020 Manuel Margot, whose three-run homer in Game 2 followed the first of Altuve’s two errors, laid down Tampa Bay’s first sacrifice bunt of the season. Bernie Wilson, SFChronicle.com, "Altuve digs even bigger hole for Houston," 13 Oct. 2020 One groundball to the right side, one damned sacrifice bunt. Paul Daugherty, The Enquirer, "Doc's Morning Line: If the Reds did the small things yesterday, they could clinch today," 1 Oct. 2020 The cumulative value of their sacrifice bunt attempts is minus-1.285, although the reality has worked out better. Jon Meoli, baltimoresun.com, "The Orioles are bunting at a league-leading rate. How often does it actually work out?," 8 Sep. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb German main battle tanks tend to sacrifice armor in favor of mobility, a Cold War consideration that saw the tanks being used for rapid counter attacks to eject the Soviet Army from German soil. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Britain, France, and Germany Might Build a Super 'Eurotank'," 13 Jan. 2021 What’s more, avoid those options that sacrifice page quality in the name of page quantity. Anthony Marcusa, chicagotribune.com, "The best coloring book for kids," 22 Dec. 2020 Oregon has among the lowest offensive three-and-out rates this season and Moorhead isn’t going to sacrifice explosiveness in order to score slower or create more plays unnecessarily. oregonlive, "How fewer plays per game is impacting Oregon Ducks’ Pac-12 leading offense," 4 Dec. 2020 This will sound terrible but one of my small comforts at the time was assuming that Marie would have to sacrifice something (probably a traditional family life) in order to be a doctor. The Washington Post, "Carolyn Hax Live: 'You are freaking warriors'," 4 Dec. 2020 Courtney said her family had to sacrifice to get ShearShare off the ground. Alexa Vickaryous, Dallas News, "Black-founded Kanarys, ShearShare break out of the pack during pandemic with boost from Google," 23 Nov. 2020 That doesn’t mean a Biden EPA would have to sacrifice climate ambition, though. Abby Smith, Washington Examiner, "Biden climate ambitions for EPA hamstrung by conservative Supreme Court," 13 Nov. 2020 Dedicated mouse-and-keyboard gamers who don’t want to sacrifice latency have another option: the lapboard—a gloriously large, cushioned lap desk with an embedded keyboard and mouse pad. Cecilia D'anastasio, Wired, "It’s Time to Try PC Gaming From Your Couch," 10 Nov. 2020 Police officers hardly ever pay personally, and police departments seldom have to sacrifice any part of their funding, according to Ms. Schwartz’s research. Scott Calvert, WSJ, "Police Rethink Policies as Cities Pay Millions to Settle Misconduct Claims," 22 Oct. 2020

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

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

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

History and Etymology for sacrifice

Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin sacrificium, from sacr-, sacer + facere to make — more at do

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Time Traveler for sacrifice

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for sacrifice

Last Updated

20 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sacrifice.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sacrifice. Accessed 26 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for sacrifice

sacrifice

noun
How to pronounce sacrifice (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sacrifice

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the act of giving up something that you want to keep especially in order to get or do something else or to help someone
: an act of killing a person or animal in a religious ceremony as an offering to please a god
: a person or animal that is killed in a sacrifice

sacrifice

verb

English Language Learners Definition of sacrifice (Entry 2 of 2)

: to give up (something that you want to keep) especially in order to get or do something else or to help someone
: to kill (a person or animal) in a religious ceremony as an offering to please a god
: to make a sacrifice bunt

sacrifice

noun
sac·​ri·​fice | \ ˈsa-krə-ˌfīs How to pronounce sacrifice (audio) \

Kids Definition of sacrifice

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the act or ceremony of making an offering to God or a god especially on an altar
2 : something offered as a religious act
3 : an act of giving up something especially for the sake of someone or something else We were happy to make a sacrifice of our time to help a friend in need.
4 : something given up especially for the sake of helping others

sacrifice

verb
sacrificed; sacrificing

Kids Definition of sacrifice (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to offer or kill as a religious act The ancient ritual involved sacrificing an animal.
2 : to give up (something) especially for the sake of something or someone else They sacrificed their lives for their country.

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Comments on sacrifice

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