hu·​man·​i·​ty hyü-ˈma-nə-tē How to pronounce humanity (audio)
plural humanities
: compassionate, sympathetic, or generous behavior or disposition : the quality or state of being humane
bespeaking humanity for the enemy in the midst of a bloody struggleC. G. Bowers
: the quality or state of being human
joined together by their common humanity
humanities plural : human attributes or qualities
his work has the ripeness of the 18th century, and its rough humanitiesPamela H. Johnson
humanities plural : the branches of learning (such as philosophy, arts, or languages) that investigate human constructs (see construct entry 2 sense 1a) and concerns as opposed to natural processes (as in physics or chemistry) and social relations (as in anthropology or economics)
: the totality of human beings : the human race : humankind
a fierce compassion for the woes of humanityMaurice Bowra

Examples of humanity in a Sentence

We appealed to his sense of humanity. These discoveries will be of benefit to all humanity. She was cut off from the rest of humanity. the college of arts and humanities He's taking courses in both the sciences and the humanities.
Recent Examples on the Web Uncertainty is hardly proof that humanity is in danger. WIRED, 28 Sep. 2023 Whether those guardrails prove to be enough to tame the unprecedented new technology and protect jobs (nevermind, humanity) far into the future remains to be seen. Oliver Darcy, CNN, 28 Sep. 2023 But Washington continues to show minimal range and would be uninteresting company if not for the sweetness, spontaneity and calm intelligence conveyed by talented newcomer Voyles, who makes a persuasive argument for the potential humanity of robots. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, 26 Sep. 2023 We are left with wounds cauterized by gatekeepers as payment, blistering from the denial of our humanity. Jessica Hoppe,, 26 Sep. 2023 China’s Hidden Century is the new exhibition at the British Museum considering history and culture in China from, roughly, 1796, when the Qing dynasty ruled over one-third of all humanity to 1912, when imperial rule collapsed. Brian T. Allen, National Review, 23 Sep. 2023 But if education in the liberal arts actually achieves these goals, how come many humanities professors are self-important, status-conscious jerks? WSJ, 22 Sep. 2023 At first glance, Sunak’s disregard for humanity’s greatest political challenge is hard to fathom. Sam Knight, The New Yorker, 21 Sep. 2023 However, this doesn’t mean humanity has lost all feasible solutions to combat Earth’s dire trajectory. Tara Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, 18 Sep. 2023 See More

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

Word History


see human entry 1

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near humanity

Cite this Entry

“Humanity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Oct. 2023.

Kids Definition


hu·​man·​i·​ty hyü-ˈman-ət-ē How to pronounce humanity (audio)
plural humanities
: the quality or state of being human or of being humane
plural : studies (as literature, history, and art) concerned primarily with human culture
: the whole collection of human beings both past and present

More from Merriam-Webster on humanity

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