Dictionary.com

martyr

[ mahr-ter ]
/ ˈmɑr tər /
Save This Word!
See synonyms for: martyr / martyred / martyring on Thesaurus.com

noun

a person who willingly suffers death rather than renounce his or her religion.
a person who is put to death or endures great suffering on behalf of any belief, principle, or cause: a martyr to the cause of social justice.
a person who undergoes severe or constant suffering: a martyr to severe headaches.
a person who seeks sympathy or attention by feigning or exaggerating pain, deprivation, etc.

verb (used with object)

to make a martyr of, especially by putting to death.
to torment or torture.

QUIZZES

THINK YOU’VE GOT A HANDLE ON THIS US STATE NICKNAME QUIZ?

Did you ever collect all those state quarters? Put them to good use on this quiz about curious state monikers and the facts around them.
Question 1 of 8
Mississippi’s nickname comes from the magnificent trees that grow there. What is it?

Origin of martyr

before 900; (noun) Middle English marter,Old English martyr<Late Latin <Late Greek mártyr, variant of Greek mártys, mártyros witness; (v.) Middle English martiren,Old English martyrian, derivative of noun

OTHER WORDS FROM martyr

mar·tyr·ish, adjectivemar·tyr·ly, adverb, adjectiveun·mar·tyred, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for martyr

British Dictionary definitions for martyr

martyr
/ (ˈmɑːtə) /

noun

a person who suffers death rather than renounce his religious beliefs
a person who suffers greatly or dies for a cause, belief, etc
a person who suffers from poor health, misfortune, etche's a martyr to rheumatism
facetious, or derogatory a person who feigns suffering to gain sympathy, help, etc

verb Also: 'martyrˌize, 'martyrˌise (tr)

to kill as a martyr
to make a martyr of

Derived forms of martyr

martyrization or martyrisation, noun

Word Origin for martyr

Old English martir, from Church Latin martyr, from Late Greek martur-, martus witness
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
Book Your Online Tutor Now