Dictionary.com

hara-kiri

[ hahr-uh-keer-ee, har-uh-, har-ee- ]
/ ˈhɑr əˈkɪər i, ˈhær ə-, ˈhær i- /
Save This Word!

noun
Also called seppuku. ceremonial suicide by ripping open the abdomen with a dagger or knife: formerly practiced in Japan by members of the warrior class when disgraced or sentenced to death.
suicide or any suicidal action; a self-destructive act: political hara-kiri.
QUIZ
SPRINT TO THE FINISH WITH THIS OLYMPICS QUIZ!
Compete in our Olympics quiz to see if you can take home the gold medal in Olympics knowledge.
Question 1 of 10
Where was the Olympics first held?
Meet Grammar CoachWrite or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar helpImprove Your Writing
Meet Grammar CoachImprove Your Writing
Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar help
Also ha·ri-ka·ri [hahr-ee-kahr-ee, har-ee-kar-ee] /ˈhɑr iˈkɑr i, ˈhær iˈkær i/ .

Origin of hara-kiri

First recorded in 1855–60; from Japanese, equivalent to hara “belly” (earlier fara, from unattested para ) + kiri “cut”
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

How to use hara-kiri in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for hara-kiri

hara-kiri

hari-kari (ˌhærɪˈkɑːrɪ)

/ (ˌhærəˈkɪrɪ) /

noun
(formerly, in Japan) ritual suicide by disembowelment with a sword when disgraced or under sentence of deathAlso called: seppuku

Word Origin for hara-kiri

C19: from Japanese taboo slang, from hara belly + kiri cutting
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for hara-kiri

hara-kiri
[ (har-i-keer-ee, hahr-uh-keer-ee) ]

A ritual of suicide, associated with warriors in traditional Japanese society.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
FEEDBACK