obit·​u·​ary | \ ə-ˈbi-chə-ˌwer-ē How to pronounce obituary (audio) , ō-, -ˈbi-chə-rē \
plural obituaries

Definition of obituary

: a notice of a person's death usually with a short biographical account

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from obituary

obituarist \ ə-​ˈbi-​chə-​ˌwər-​ist How to pronounce obituary (audio) , -​ˈbi-​chə-​rist , ō-​ \ noun
obituary adjective

Synonyms for obituary


Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of obituary in a Sentence

I read her obituary in the newspaper. several obituaries for Herman Melville portrayed him as an obscure, largely forgotten author
Recent Examples on the Web Instagram requires proof that the person has passed away to memorialize an account, like an obituary or news article. Kim Komando, USA TODAY, 9 Sep. 2021 When Hemingway died, on July 2, 1961, the NBC news anchor Edwin Newman delivered a short obituary on air, a clip of which appears in Hemingway. Elaine Blair, The New York Review of Books, 7 Sep. 2021 Clay died two days before her 19th birthday, her obituary states. Alexis Stevens, ajc, 6 Sep. 2021 Her brother, who died in 2000, was an international activist who brought Jews out of the former Soviet Union, according to his Baltimore Sun obituary. Jacques Kelly,, 5 Sep. 2021 And now here is an obituary of sorts for the man Mervin Morris. Warren Shoulberg, Forbes, 30 Aug. 2021 Hayes’ obituary states that in lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Dorchester Youth Hockey., 27 Aug. 2021 Describing the findings of the truth commission, the AP obituary noted a memorable line from its final report. Washington Post, 24 Aug. 2021 The accusations and his stepping down, Mr. Abrams said, would surely be etched into the opening lines of Mr. Cuomo’s eventual obituary. New York Times, 14 Aug. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'obituary.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of obituary

1703, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for obituary

borrowed from New Latin obituārium, noun derivative of Medieval Latin obituārius "of death, recording records or dates of death," from Latin obitu-, stem of obitus "death" + -ārius -ary entry 2 — more at obit

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About obituary

Time Traveler for obituary

Time Traveler

The first known use of obituary was in 1703

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near obituary




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for obituary

Last Updated

13 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Obituary.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for obituary



English Language Learners Definition of obituary

: an article in a newspaper about the life of someone who has died recently


obit·​u·​ary | \ ō-ˈbi-chə-ˌwer-ē How to pronounce obituary (audio) \
plural obituaries

Kids Definition of obituary

: a notice of a person's death (as in a newspaper)

More from Merriam-Webster on obituary

Nglish: Translation of obituary for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of obituary for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Dog Words Quiz

  • shiba puppy more or less demanding cuddles
  • Which of the following animals has a dog in its etymology?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!