tem·​po·​ral·​i·​ty ˌtem-pə-ˈra-lə-tē How to pronounce temporality (audio)
plural temporalities
: civil or political as distinguished from spiritual or ecclesiastical power or authority
: an ecclesiastical property or revenue
often used in plural
: the quality or state of being temporal

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web There’s more than enough blurring of the lines between reality and dark fantasy, not to mention any conventional grasp of temporality, to position Inside as a new entry in the Greek Weird Wave. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, 20 Feb. 2023 It’s sparsely furnished, creating a sense of foreboding temporality. Rachel Silva, ELLE Decor, 3 Nov. 2022 Stored in caves or dedicated shrine boxes, they’re occasionally left to melt in a symbolic commentary on the temporality of life — a kind of existential art. Aimee Farrell Anthony Cotsifas Martin Bourne, New York Times, 15 Sep. 2022 These are the moments when late-night comedy is, theoretically, still very much stuck in its temporality. Vulture, 9 Sep. 2022 What we have been left with is an empty, windswept landscape almost devoid of all trace of temporality. Carlo Rovelli, Discover Magazine, 31 May 2018 For some the visceral sense of loss and its magnitude, and the long temporality of illness and slow recovery, is already part of their experience of Covid. Wired, 22 July 2022 At BlackStar, Nkiru’s nonlinear, intergenerational story will be part of a larger conversation about form, temporality and the visual language of contemporary Black cinema. New York Times, 3 Aug. 2022 The hipster’s temporality was both nostalgic and accelerated. Hari Kunzru, Harper’s Magazine , 27 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'temporality.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English temperalte, temporalte, temporalyte (in plural or collective) "worldly matters, secular authority," borrowed from Anglo-French temporalté, temporalité, borrowed from Late Latin temporālitāt-, temporālitās "temporary character, duration of the present time," from Latin temporālis temporal entry 1 + -itāt-, -itās -ity

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of temporality was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near temporality

Cite this Entry

“Temporality.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/temporality. Accessed 25 Mar. 2023.

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