sudden death


Definition of sudden death

1 : unexpected death that is instantaneous or occurs within minutes from any cause other than violence sudden death following coronary occlusion
2 : extra play to break a tie in a sports contest in which the first to score or gain the lead wins

Examples of sudden death in a Sentence

We won 27–24 in sudden death. a serious heart condition that can result in sudden death

Recent Examples on the Web

The election was called following the sudden death of Mayor Bill Carpenter in July. Johanna Seltz,, "Brockton NAACP to host mayoral debate," 3 Sep. 2019 Due to privacy concerns, authorities were unable to comment on how the two dependents were being cared for in the wake of the sudden death of one parent and the incarceration of another. Nick Ibarra, The Mercury News, "Santa Cruz County woman charged with murder in husband’s stabbing death," 28 Aug. 2019 José Huerta said the family is heartbroken by the sudden death. Rebecca Liebson, New York Times, "7 Relatives Worked at a Construction Site. Then Came a Deadly Collapse.," 27 Aug. 2019 On Thursday, friends and family mourned the sudden death of Anchorage Republican Sen. Chris Birch. James Brooks, Anchorage Daily News, "With senator’s death, Alaska Legislature loses prominent voice in favor of lower dividend," 9 Aug. 2019 Turner has had a difficult few weeks following the sudden death of one of her dogs. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Sophie Turner Vacations with Priyanka Chopra and a Brand New Puppy," 3 Aug. 2019 The event at the center of the book is the sudden death of Hiroko’s father. Anna Altman, The New Yorker, "Pico Iyer’s Japanese Love Story, from Spring to “Autumn Light”," 17 July 2019 Though marked early by tragedy with the sudden death of beloved chef and co-owner Angus Brown, 8ARM never faltered. Hilary Cadigan, Bon Appétit, "TFW One of Your Favorite Chefs Takes Over One of Your Favorite Kitchens," 15 July 2019 Family and law enforcement officers mourned the sudden death of Harris County Sheriff’s deputy Omar Diaz at a service for the husband and devoted father on Thursday. Samantha Ketterer, Houston Chronicle, "Family, friends mourn sudden death of Harris County deputy," 11 July 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for sudden death

Last Updated

13 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for sudden death

The first known use of sudden death was in the 14th century

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sudden death


English Language Learners Definition of sudden death

sports : a period of extra play that is added when teams or players are tied at the end of normal play and that ends as soon as one team or player scores a point or gains the lead
medical : quick and unexpected death from any cause other than violence

sudden death


Medical Definition of sudden death

: unexpected death that is instantaneous or occurs within minutes or hours from any cause other than violence sudden death following coronary occlusion especially : sudden cardiac death

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Comments on sudden death

What made you want to look up sudden death? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


concealment of treason or felony

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