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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce martyrdom (audio)

Dictionary definition of martyrdom

The act or experience of sacrificing one's life or enduring extreme suffering for a cause, belief, or principle that is considered noble or sacred.
"The story of Joan of Arc's martyrdom has inspired countless generations."

Detailed meaning of martyrdom

It is a concept deeply rooted in religious and historical contexts, where individuals willingly accept persecution, torture, or death rather than renounce their faith or abandon their values. The notion of martyrdom often embodies notions of heroism, selflessness, and unwavering commitment to one's convictions. Martyrs are revered for their courage and steadfastness, serving as symbols of inspiration and devotion to their communities. Their sacrifice is seen as a testament to the power of conviction, as they willingly choose personal suffering in order to uphold what they deem to be the ultimate truth or righteousness. The concept of martyrdom transcends cultural and religious boundaries, serving as a reminder of the immense strength and dedication that individuals can demonstrate in the face of adversity.

Example sentences containing martyrdom

1. Some people yearn for martyrdom as a testament of their faith.
2. The martyrdom of early Christian saints played a significant role in the spread of Christianity.
3. His martyrdom for the cause of freedom was not in vain as it sparked a revolution.
4. The monument was erected to commemorate the martyrdom of fallen soldiers.
5. Many books on history describe the martyrdom of those who stood against tyranny.
6. Some extremists misuse the concept of martyrdom for destructive purposes.

History and etymology of martyrdom

The noun 'martyrdom' has a profound etymology deeply rooted in religious and historical contexts. It originates from the Greek word 'marturion,' which is derived from 'martys,' meaning 'witness' or 'martyr.' In early Christian history, a martyr was someone who bore witness to their faith, often by enduring extreme suffering, including death, rather than renouncing their beliefs. The term 'martyrdom' emerged to describe the act or experience of sacrificing one's life or enduring severe suffering for a cause, belief, or principle that is considered noble or sacred. Over time, 'martyrdom' expanded beyond its religious origins and became associated with any situation where individuals were willing to endure great hardship or make the ultimate sacrifice for a deeply held conviction. Its etymology underscores the idea of being a witness to one's beliefs, even in the face of adversity, making it a powerful and enduring concept in human history.

Quiz: Find the meaning of martyrdom

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Further usage examples of martyrdom

1. The movie depicted the martyrdom of the main character in a very poignant way.
2. She believes that her constant sacrifices for her family amount to a form of martyrdom.
3. The artwork captures the raw emotion and pain of martyrdom.
4. The church’s stained glass windows beautifully illustrate stories of martyrdom from the Bible.
5. There are different cultural interpretations of martyrdom around the world.
6. Martyrdom is a theme that recurs in many religious texts and historical documents.
7. He faced his martyrdom with dignity, inspiring many to fight for their rights.
8. The memorial service paid tribute to her martyrdom in battling social injustices.
9. Her unwavering dedication led her to martyrdom for her faith.
10. The historical figure's martyrdom is celebrated every year.
11. His commitment to justice ended in martyrdom for a greater cause.
12. The stories of martyrdom inspire generations to stand up for what's right.
13. The hero's martyrdom became a symbol of courage and sacrifice.
14. The struggle for freedom often requires great acts of martyrdom.
15. Many saints in history have faced martyrdom for their beliefs.
16. The martyrdom of innocent civilians in the war was a tragedy.
17. The martyrdom of activists fueled the civil rights movement.
18. Some view self-immolation as an extreme form of martyrdom.
19. His dedication to environmental causes led to his martyrdom.
20. The concept of martyrdom is deeply rooted in religious history.
21. The stories of martyrdom are shared to preserve their memory.
22. Her martyrdom for women's rights sparked a global movement.
23. The ancient text recounts the martyrdom of a revered prophet.
24. The film portrayed the emotional journey leading to martyrdom.
25. The act of martyrdom is a testament to unwavering belief.
26. The anniversary of his martyrdom is marked with solemn ceremonies.
27. Martyrdom is often seen as the ultimate sacrifice for a just cause.
28. The concept of martyrdom raises questions about the value of one's life for a higher purpose.



sacrifice, survival, denial, rejection


Aftermath and Consequences, Challenges and Distress, Consequences and Reactions, Crisis and Opposition, Fortitude and Rebellion, Determination and Tenacity, Perseverance and Fortitude

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