sac·​ri·​fi·​cial ˌsa-krə-ˈfi-shəl How to pronounce sacrificial (audio)
: of, relating to, of the nature of, or involving sacrifice
: of or relating to a metal that serves as an anode which is electrolytically consumed instead of another metal that is present
sacrificially adverb

Examples of sacrificial in a Sentence

their sacrificial acts of self-denial
Recent Examples on the Web The pig, cow, and chicken burials might’ve been sacrificial in nature, meant to serve and sustain the deceased in the afterlife. Sam Walters, Discover Magazine, 14 Feb. 2024 An ancient wharf and sacrificial pit In another area of the Tingshan site, experts identified the ruins of an ancient wharf, known as the Linshui Wharf. Moira Ritter, Miami Herald, 7 Feb. 2024 Remedy One of those sacrificial murders was none other than Agent Nightingale, whom fans will remember as the trigger-happy, typically inebriated ex-FBI agent from the first game. Sarah Leboeuf, Ars Technica, 13 June 2023 By Hannah Giorgis Designing a Super Bowl halftime performance is, in many ways, an exercise in sacrificial concision: Artists must whittle decades of songs into a crowd-friendly, roughly 13-minute reprieve from athletics and multimillion-dollar commercials. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, 12 Feb. 2024 His human heart could not keep up with the sacrificial love demanded of it by his warrior spirit. Mike Kerrigan, National Review, 7 Feb. 2024 Now with Skinner forced out at the end of the year by term limits, five Democrats and one sacrificial Republican are vying to replace her. East Bay Times Editorial, The Mercury News, 3 Feb. 2024 Still, the bones likely belonged to sacrificial victims, the study said. Aspen Pflughoeft, Miami Herald, 24 Jan. 2024 People first used the paper-cuts in sacrificial offerings and later fashioned them as decorations pasted on windows, doors, and walls during local festivals, weddings, and other celebrations. Ann Scott Tyson, The Christian Science Monitor, 12 Dec. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'sacrificial.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1607, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of sacrificial was in 1607

Dictionary Entries Near sacrificial

Cite this Entry

“Sacrificial.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


sac·​ri·​fi·​cial ˌsak-rə-ˈfish-əl How to pronounce sacrificial (audio)
: of or relating to sacrifice
sacrificially adverb
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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