sanc·​ti·​ty | \ ˈsaŋ(k)-tə-tē How to pronounce sanctity (audio) \
plural sanctities

Definition of sanctity

1 : holiness of life and character : godliness
2a : the quality or state of being holy or sacred : inviolability
b sanctities plural : sacred objects, obligations, or rights

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Examples of sanctity in a Sentence

the sanctity of the elderly nun shone through in her every word and gesture
Recent Examples on the Web Some said even the mention of his name was an accost to the sanctity of Presidents Day, a federal holiday that honors the birthday of the first U.S. president George Washington. Stephanie Toone, ajc, "On social media, Trump both cheered and jeered for Presidents Day," 15 Feb. 2021 Throughout his address, Biden repeated the importance of restoring unity and the sanctity of democracy across America. Luke Mcgee, CNN, "Biden pledges America will 'engage with the world once again'," 20 Jan. 2021 Pearl-necklaced and poised, his counterpart looks out at the solemn surroundings: an event long considered a bureaucratic formality unfolding with the sanctity of a ritual. Washington Post, "Many Trump-era photos look like dramatic old paintings. That’s no ‘accident.’," 16 Jan. 2021 Carter said the United States, in the pursuit of strategic gains over the Soviet Union, frequently had abandoned its own stated commitment to the sanctity of freedom and human rights. Gilbert Garcia,, "Garcia: Joaquin Castro has a foreign policy message worth hearing," 9 Dec. 2020 In November 2017, its followers staged a 21-day protest and sit-in after a reference to the sanctity of the Prophet Muhammad was removed from the text of a government form. Star Tribune, "Pakistani Islamists' anti-France sit-in ends peacefully," 17 Nov. 2020 The window epitomizes Miller’s ideas about the sanctity of nature and his wish for humanity to live in harmony with it. Liz Logan, Smithsonian Magazine, "A New Virtual Tour Takes Us Inside Architect Edgar Miller’s Masterwork," 10 Dec. 2020 These rights include freedom of speech, freedom of association, due process, legal equality, religious liberty, and sanctity of conscience. Bethany Blankley, Washington Examiner, "Report: 88% of universities restrict expression, nearly half restrict online speech," 14 Dec. 2020 The lawsuits being filed aren’t patriotic attempts to protect the sanctity of our elections. Rex Huppke,, "Column: Crybaby Trump has gone ‘coup-coup’ and GOP nods along. Call it what it is: Crazy, stupid and dangerous.," 9 Dec. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sanctity

Middle English saunctite, from Anglo-French sainteté, from Latin sanctitat-, sanctitas, from sanctus sacred

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Time Traveler for sanctity

Time Traveler

The first known use of sanctity was in the 14th century

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Statistics for sanctity

Last Updated

22 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sanctity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Mar. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of sanctity

: the quality or state of being holy, very important, or valuable

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