\ˈshrīn, especially Southern ˈsrīn\

Definition of shrine 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a case, box, or receptacle especially : one in which sacred relics (such as the bones of a saint) are deposited

b : a place in which devotion is paid to a saint or deity : sanctuary

c : a niche containing a religious image

2 : a receptacle (such as a tomb) for the dead

3 : a place or object hallowed by its associations


shrined; shrining

Definition of shrine (Entry 2 of 2)

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Synonyms for shrine

Synonyms: Noun

sanctuary, sanctum

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Examples of shrine in a Sentence


the shrine of Saint Mary They erected a shrine to the saint. tourists visiting the shrines of American independence The writer's house has become a shrine to his fans.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Owned by Bradford Taylor, the wine bar as of 2018 is a shrine to natural wine, which itself is a burgeoning wine category in the Bay Area. Justin Phillips, San Francisco Chronicle, "Two Bay Area bars named among the country’s best," 30 May 2018 Riggio, who took engineering classes in high school and at NYU, created it as a kind of shrine to the late Walter De Maria, the pioneering conceptualist famous for his Lightning Field project in New Mexico. Ted Loos, WSJ, "The Hamptons Oasis That Barnes & Noble Built," 24 May 2018 There is no investigation’ On a corner table in the house Luzviminda Siapo shares with her mother and surviving daughter is a shrine to her dead son, Raymart. Time, "A New Netflix Series Tells the Story of the Philippines' Drug War. But Its Critics Are Condemning Amo as Propaganda," 30 Apr. 2018 Prince William Is Making Royal History with His First Official Visit to Israel His morning in the city also took in the Islamic shrine of the Dome of the Old Rock and the al-Aqsa mosque. Simon Perry,, "Prince William Wears Yarmulke at Western Wall, Visits His Great-Grandmother's Resting Place," 28 June 2018 During a visit to a shrine in rural Shimane Prefecture in western Japan, Mr. Yoshioka, a retired furniture maker, forgot to set the parking brake, spooking his wife, Kazuko, when the car drifted backward. Motoko Rich, New York Times, "Japan Moves to Ease Aging Drivers Out of Their Cars," 12 May 2018 During a visit to a shrine in rural Shimane prefecture in western Japan, Yoshioka, a retired furniture maker, forgot to set the parking brake, spooking his wife, Kazuko, when the car drifted backward. Motoko Rich,, "Japan moves to ease aging drivers out of their cars," 12 May 2018 Sadr’s 12,000 armed followers protect — even dominate — this city, ensuring peace in a place that is overwhelmingly Sunni Muslim but is home to one of the world’s holiest Shiite shrines. Washington Post, "Public enemy or savior? An Iraqi city could reveal the true Moqtada al-Sadr," 4 July 2018 Let the ruins, perched high above Madrid, serve as a warning to a nation riven by enmity and to any citizen who might wish for a dictator like Franco, a murderous strongman who would try to wring immortality from a shrine full of the dead. Matías Costa, Smithsonian, "The Battle Over the Memory of the Spanish Civil War," 28 June 2018

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for shrine


Middle English, from Old English scrīn, from Latin scrinium case, chest

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Statistics for shrine

Last Updated

10 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for shrine

The first known use of shrine was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for shrine



English Language Learners Definition of shrine

: a place connected with a holy person or event where people go to worship

: a place that people visit because it is connected with someone or something that is important to them


\ˈshrīn \

Kids Definition of shrine

1 : a case or box for sacred relics (as the bones of saints)

2 : a place where people go to worship because of its connection to a holy person or event

3 : a place that is considered sacred or regarded with great respect The Lincoln Memorial is a shrine to all lovers of freedom.

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