sick·​ness | \ ˈsik-nəs How to pronounce sickness (audio) \

Definition of sickness

1a : ill health : illness
b : a disordered, weakened, or unsound condition
2 : a specific disease

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Examples of sickness in a Sentence

He died from an unknown sickness. she was plagued by sickness most of her adult life

Recent Examples on the Web

Yet for most of the 20th century, sickness was prioritised over wellness. The Economist, "The business of the body," 11 July 2019 When one of her children or grandchildren were hurting, from falls or sickness, Ma Hila would cut out a red paper heart. Vincent T. Davis,, "San Antonio nonprofit lifts sick children’s spirits with Christmas in July," 6 July 2019 By classifying different cry features, like pitch, the algorithm can suggest whether the cry is due to sickness or pain, and identify the degree of urgency. Emily Matchar, Smithsonian, "A Translator for Baby Cries? Yes, Please.," 2 July 2019 The algae blooms can cause sickness in people and animals, including rashes, stomach cramps, nausea, diarrhea and vomiting. Leada Gore |,, "Updated beach conditions: Panama City Beach, Destin, Gulf Shores; latest rip current forecast," 27 June 2019 About half of the country lives paycheck to paycheck as tens of millions of our people are an accident, a divorce, a sickness or a layoff away from economic devastation. Tara Golshan, Vox, "Read: Bernie Sanders defines his vision for democratic socialism in the United States," 12 June 2019 That and fighting through sickness and whatever else to take the mound or a position on the field. Shawn Windsor, Detroit Free Press, "How Michigan baseball's College World Series run is changing legacy of program," 12 June 2019 Those who survive say they were accused of sorcery to explain the death of a child, a sickness spreading through a village, or even bad weather. Seema Yasmin, SELF, "In Rural India, Protecting Women From Witch Hunting, and an Impending Flood," 17 Aug. 2018 After two quick outs, Taylor — who entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the seventh after being held out because of sickness, according to Roberts — fell behind 0-and-2. Jack Harris,, "Dodgers beat the Diamondbacks on five straight walks with two outs in ninth," 2 July 2019

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

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

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Statistics for sickness

Last Updated

21 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sickness

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

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English Language Learners Definition of sickness

: unhealthy condition of body or mind : the state of being sick
: a specific type of disease or illness
: the feeling you have in your stomach when you think you are going to vomit


sick·​ness | \ ˈsik-nəs How to pronounce sickness (audio) \

Kids Definition of sickness

1 : ill health : illness
2 : a specific disease He came down with an unknown sickness.


sick·​ness | \ ˈsik-nəs How to pronounce sickness (audio) \

Medical Definition of sickness

1 : the condition of being ill : ill health
2 : a specific disease
3 : nausea

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More from Merriam-Webster on sickness

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sickness

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sickness

Spanish Central: Translation of sickness

Nglish: Translation of sickness for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sickness for Arabic Speakers

Comments on sickness

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