hom·​age ˈä-mij How to pronounce homage (audio) ˈhä- How to pronounce homage (audio)
 sense 2b is often  ō-ˈmäzh
: a feudal ceremony by which a man acknowledges himself the vassal of a lord
: the relationship between a feudal lord and his vassal
: an act done or payment made in meeting the obligations due from a vassal to a feudal lord
: expression of high regard : respect
bowed in homage to the king
often used with pay
Her work pays homage to women artists of the past.
: something that shows respect or attests to the worth or influence of another : tribute
his long life filled with international homages to his unique musical talentPeople

Did you know?

In medieval times, a person could officially become a vassal of a king or lord by publicly announcing allegiance to him in a formal ceremony. In that ritual, known as homage (from the Latin root homo-, meaning “man”), the subject (who was usually but not always a man) knelt and placed his hands between those of his lord, symbolically surrendering himself and putting himself at the lord’s disposal and under his jurisdiction. A bond was thus forged between the two; the vassal’s part was to revere and serve his lord, and the lord’s role was to protect and provide for the vassal and his family. The symbolism attached to the word proved irresistible, and homage quickly broadened to apply with the meaning “respect or honor” in a variety of contexts. Today, a singer can pay homage to someone who influenced their career, and a recipe can be an homage to a chef’s hometown.

Choose the Right Synonym for homage

honor, homage, reverence, deference mean respect and esteem shown to another.

honor may apply to the recognition of one's right to great respect or to any expression of such recognition.

the nomination is an honor

homage adds the implication of accompanying praise.

paying homage to Shakespeare

reverence implies profound respect mingled with love, devotion, or awe.

great reverence for my father

deference implies a yielding or submitting to another's judgment or preference out of respect or reverence.

showed no deference to their elders

Examples of homage in a Sentence

The book is a deeply personal homage to her favorite city. the poem is a moving homage to all who have served in our nation's armed services
Recent Examples on the Web Designed as an homage to the 16th-century Medresa Ben Youssef college, one of the city’s most notable architectural landmarks, the imposing complex of courtyards at the heart of the resort reveals itself slowly. Liam Hess, Vogue, 5 July 2024 The song’s style is an homage to the decades-old genre and the Dominican Republic. Griselda Flores, Billboard, 3 July 2024 Its bug-eyed headlights and bubble cockpit gave it the look of an alien spaceship; its interior was an homage to an alternate, steampunk universe; its engine bay was packed with a Mercedes-Benz V-12 tied, unlike any other use of that engine, to a manual gearbox. Will Sabel Courtney, Robb Report, 2 July 2024 Meant to be an homage to the pioneering executive, the moniker could also be seen as a collision of the old and the new. Rosemary Feitelberg, WWD, 28 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for homage 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'homage.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English, from Anglo-French homage, omage, from home man, vassal, from Latin homin-, homo human being; akin to Old English guma human being, Latin humus earth — more at humble

First Known Use

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

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


Dictionary Entries Near homage

Cite this Entry

“Homage.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/homage. Accessed 13 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


hom·​age ˈ(h)äm-ij How to pronounce homage (audio)
: a ceremony in which a person pledged allegiance to a lord and became his vassal
: something done or given in fulfilling a vassal's duty to a lord
: respect entry 1 sense 2a, honor
paid homage to her

More from Merriam-Webster on homage

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