\ ˈərn How to pronounce urn (audio) \

Definition of urn

1 : a vessel that is typically an ornamental vase on a pedestal and that is used for various purposes (such as preserving the ashes of the dead after cremation)
2 : a closed vessel usually with a spigot for serving a hot beverage a coffee urn

Examples of urn in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web French porcelain urn — 1890 Q. This large vase was a housewarming gift for my grandparents in about 1908. oregonlive, "French urn, Pittsburgh lamp could be worth thousands: Today’s Collectibles," 1 Feb. 2020 And Reggie said funeral homes, by law, can’t refuse outside caskets or urns. Aldo Svaldi, The Denver Post, "Pricing flights and cars online is common. Are funerals next? Founder of Funeralocity thinks so.," 22 Nov. 2019 Our collectibles this month run the gamut from a beautiful porcelain urn worth thousands of dollars to an everyday brass smudge pot that could be picked up for much less than that. oregonlive, "French urn, Pittsburgh lamp could be worth thousands: Today’s Collectibles," 1 Feb. 2020 So Maegawa includes a cookie jar that’s also a funerary urn. Mark Jenkins, Washington Post, "In the galleries: Artists make use of Asian iconography via paper and sculpture," 31 Jan. 2020 Bednarz, who flew back to Sweden on Saturday, said the man told her where the urn could be found. USA TODAY, "'Relieved and thankful': Cypriot thief tells tourist where to find son’s stolen ashes," 31 Dec. 2019 Later, the family gathers to witness the cremation and often picks up the remaining bone fragments, using long chopsticks to place them in an urn. Maggie Jones, New York Times, "The Movement to Bring Death Closer," 19 Dec. 2019 Spirit can be added directly into the urn or per cup. NBC News, "3 warming winter cocktails to sip this week," 17 Dec. 2019 Toward the back of the sixth-floor boardroom of the New York Stock Exchange—past the fake skylight and the real Fabergé urn—there’s a black, walnut-size blob on display. Tyler Foggatt, The New Yorker, "How to Make a Diamond Disappear," 28 Oct. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for urn

Middle English urne, from Latin urna

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Time Traveler for urn

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for urn

Last Updated

25 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Urn.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/urn. Accessed 29 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for urn


How to pronounce urn (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of urn

: a container that is often shaped like a vase with a closed top and that is used to hold the ashes of someone who has been cremated
: a closed container with a faucet near the bottom which is used to serve hot drinks


\ ˈərn How to pronounce urn (audio) \

Kids Definition of urn

1 : a container usually in the form of a vase resting on a stand
2 : a closed container with a faucet used for serving a hot beverage a coffee urn

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More from Merriam-Webster on urn

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for urn

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with urn

Spanish Central: Translation of urn

Nglish: Translation of urn for Spanish Speakers

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