wid·​ow·​hood | \ ˈwi-dō-ˌhu̇d How to pronounce widowhood (audio) , -də- \

Definition of widowhood

1 : the fact or state of being a widow
2 : the period during which a woman remains a widow

Examples of widowhood in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Honorifics should be used on envelopes, and widowhood does not change the lady’s form of address. Washington Post, "Miss Manners: Comparison remains the thief of joy," 9 Nov. 2020 Nothing can prepare you for widowhood, but people can help you through it. cleveland, "Dear Annie: Nobody’s perfect," 11 Oct. 2020 Anambra has two laws criminalizing widowhood rites, says Ndidi Mezue, the states' commissioner for women and children affairs, but its enforcement has been slow. Bukola Adebayo, CNN, "Her husband died. Then his family shaved her head and made her strip beside his grave," 27 Mar. 2020 Alvarez has her protagonist Antonia (who resembles her creator in age, background and temperament) face several dilemmas at once, including widowhood, a mentally ill sister and an unexpected, pregnant houseguest. Bethanne Patrick, Washington Post, "Ten books to read in April," 1 Apr. 2020 Alzheimer's strikes many more women than men, and the study authors suggest widowhood may explain some of that discrepancy between the sexes. Sandee Lamotte, CNN, "Widowhood increases risk of Alzheimer's, study says," 26 Feb. 2020 The off-kilterness of Sarah’s comment, and her inability to grasp the reality of widowhood, is a shock. Julia Rothchild, The New Yorker, "“The Last Conversation” and the Difficult Questions of Dementia," 6 Feb. 2020 The four mothers met years ago and have maintained a close bond through the usual challenges of infidelity, illness, divorce and widowhood. Ron Charles Critic, Washington Post, "Parents will stop at nothing to get their kids into a prestigious school," 16 July 2019 In the Chicago suburbs, a free support group called Culinary Grief Therapy directly addresses the link between food and widowhood. Amelia Nierenberg, New York Times, "For Many Widows, the Hardest Part Is Mealtime," 28 Oct. 2019

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

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

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

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Last Updated

22 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Widowhood.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/widowhood. Accessed 30 Nov. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on widowhood

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about widowhood

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