Definition of commemorate in English:


See synonyms for commemorate

Translate commemorate into Spanish

transitive verb

[with object]
  • 1Recall and show respect for (someone or something)

    ‘a wreath-laying ceremony to commemorate the war dead’
    • ‘a stone commemorating a boy who died at sea’
    • ‘I have laid a wreath at the Cenotaph in Belfast to commemorate the British war dead.’
    • ‘In subsequent years, the hour and day was set aside to commemorate the war dead of the Allied nations.’
    • ‘So he argued against the rich being able to commemorate their war dead with ornate personal graves.’
    • ‘Youngsters have recited poetry to commemorate a century of war.’
    • ‘How does the government intend to commemorate the war dead in the future?’
    • ‘The Yasukuni is controversial because it commemorates Japan's military dead, including some who were convicted war criminals.’
    • ‘Having mourned their dead, commemorated their martyrs and heroes, all the peoples of Europe, including the Germans, recovered from their wounds, rebuilt their shattered cities.’
    • ‘The medal was first established in 1856 after the end of the Crimean War to commemorate actions of extreme bravery in the face of the enemy.’
    • ‘Together with many of his old comrades and his wife, Stella, Peter will be at a ceremony in Westminster to commemorate the anniversary of the battle.’
    • ‘Things began well, with a moving ceremony commemorating the firefighters who had lost their lives and honoring local firefighters who had gone to New York afterwards to help out.’
    • ‘On Good Friday, continental Europeans commemorate that Christ was crucified and died to absolve our sins and give us eternal salvation.’
    • ‘From April 8 people will be able to opt for a civic ceremony tailored to commemorate the life and times of their loved ones.’
    • ‘More than 4,000 petals were dropped at a ceremony to commemorate police officers killed in the line of duty.’
    • ‘Sixty years on, that spirit is remembered and celebrated as 15 Heads of State participate in a ceremony which will commemorate the values the veterans fought for.’
    • ‘Gabriel Fawcett investigates how the Germans commemorate the losses they sustained in the First and Second World Wars.’
    • ‘Veterans of one of the landmark battles of the Second World War were reunited in York at the weekend to commemorate the campaign.’
    • ‘World leaders and thousands of people are commemorating a grim anniversary today.’
    • ‘The ceremony is held annually to commemorate the lives of all Irish people who have died in past wars or while on service with the United Nations.’
    • ‘Unlike Veterans Day, which commemorates living veterans, Memorial Day is expressly intended as a day to memorialize the sacrifice of men and women who have given their lives in uniform.’
    • ‘Small wonder that many ex-Servicemen who survived the conflicts which claimed the lives of those commemorated on memorials such as this despair of what has become of the country they fought to protect.’
    keep alive, keep going, keep in existence, preserve, conserve, sustain, maintain, continue, extend, carry on, keep up, cause to continue, prolong
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    1. 1.1Celebrate (an event, a person, or a situation) by doing or building something.
      ‘it was a night commemorated in a song’
      • ‘I danced into the morning to celebrate the coming-of-age of young men and fell asleep in a dark hut while marriages and deaths were commemorated in song.’
      • ‘I was born In The Summer Of '69, and a song was written to commemorate the occasion.’
      • ‘He was awarded the Trinity Cross in 1978, his portrait adorned two postage stamps and six calypso songs were penned to commemorate his triumph.’
      • ‘She has dealt with countless compensation claims from sufferers and their loved ones, including many of the Railway Works staff commemorated by the Swindon Disease memorial garden in Queen's Park.’
      • ‘Halfway down the hill Hector Pieterson was shot and fell, on 16 June, and the spot is now commemorated with a stark stone memorial to the 12-year-old boy.’
      • ‘The fight for independence during the past century is commemorated throughout the land by war memorials and museums displaying what are now known as the remnants of war.’
      • ‘In 1902 Martha Washington became the first American woman to be commemorated by a U.S. postage stamp.’
      celebrate, pay tribute to, pay homage to, honour, salute, toast
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/kəˈmeməˌrāt/ /kəˈmɛməˌreɪt/


Late 16th century from Latin commemorat- ‘brought to remembrance’, from the verb commemorare, from com- ‘altogether’ + memorare ‘relate’ (from memor ‘mindful’).