noun, often attributive
hos·​pi·​tal | \ ˈhä-(ˌ)spi-tᵊl How to pronounce hospital (audio) \

Definition of hospital

1 : a charitable institution for the needy, aged, infirm, or young
2 : an institution where the sick or injured are given medical or surgical care usually used in British English without an article after a preposition
3 : a repair shop for specified small objects a clock hospital

Examples of hospital in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Clinton, 75, was admitted Tuesday to the hospital southeast of Los Angeles with an infection unrelated to COVID-19., 18 Oct. 2021 Austin and Travis County on Friday recorded 23 new hospital admissions for COVID-19. John Bacon, USA TODAY, 18 Oct. 2021 While other countries faced overwhelmed hospital systems and devastating death tolls, my family in South Australia and Tasmania have hardly experienced what pandemic daily life is all about for so many others. Britt Clennett, ABC News, 17 Oct. 2021 Former President Bill Clinton was released Sunday from the Southern California hospital where he had been admitted days earlier for an infection. Jessica Chasmar, Fox News, 17 Oct. 2021 Supplemental coverage, by contrast, can be used with any doctor or hospital that accepts Medicare in the U.S. 6. Neal Templin, WSJ, 17 Oct. 2021 Vaccination rates surged among Sacramento-area hospital employees after the Newsom administration’s stringent order of Aug. 5, clearing 90%. Wes Venteicher, Anchorage Daily News, 17 Oct. 2021 The driver of the motorcycle, Richard Cole, 57, from South Pittsburg, Tennessee, was taken to an area hospital with injuries. al, 17 Oct. 2021 Former President Clinton was seen leaving an Orange County hospital Sunday morning, six days after he was admitted and treated for a urological and blood infection. Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times, 17 Oct. 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hospital

Middle English hospital, ospitale "residence for pilgrims and travelers, charitable institution providing residence for the poor and infirm," borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Medieval Latin hospitāle, going back to Latin, in plural hospitālia "guest accommodations" (probably by ellipsis from hospitāle cubiculum "sleeping room for guests"), noun derivative from neuter of hospitālis "of a guest, of hospitality, hospitable," from hospit-, hospes "guest, host" + -ālis -al entry 1 — more at host entry 3

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Time Traveler for hospital

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near hospital



hospital apprentice

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Statistics for hospital

Last Updated

20 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Hospital.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for hospital



English Language Learners Definition of hospital

: a place where sick or injured people are given care or treatment and where children are often born


hos·​pi·​tal | \ ˈhä-ˌspi-tᵊl How to pronounce hospital (audio) \

Kids Definition of hospital

: a place where the sick and injured are given medical care


noun, often attributive
hos·​pi·​tal | \ ˈhäs-ˌpit-ᵊl How to pronounce hospital (audio) \

Medical Definition of hospital

1 : a charitable institution for the needy, aged, infirm, or young
2a : an institution where the sick or injured are given medical or surgical care when used in British English following a preposition, the article is usually omitted came and saw me in hospital— Robert Graves
b : a place for the care and treatment of sick and injured animals


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