Definition of obituary in English:


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nounplural noun obituaries

  • A notice of a death, especially in a newspaper, typically including a brief biography of the deceased person.

    as modifier ‘an obituary notice’
    • ‘the obituary of a friend’
    • ‘Every day that passes sees the obituary columns of broadsheet newspapers bring us more examples.’
    • ‘Everyone knows that major newspapers hold obituaries written well in advance of the deaths of notable people.’
    • ‘The Warwickshire captain is used to reading his obituary notice in the columns of the national newspapers.’
    • ‘This was the obituary notice that appeared in the paper regarding his death.’
    • ‘He also does not want a memorial service or even an obituary in the newspaper.’
    • ‘This letter contained an obituary notice and some psychotic ramblings.’
    • ‘Newspaper obituary columns are changing but they are essentially respectful of the dead.’
    • ‘Are you worried about the future glut of obituaries in national newspapers?’
    • ‘It began with an obituary and a reporter's talk with a grieving family.’
    • ‘The nature of my employment is such that I am sometimes called upon to sub-edit obituaries for the next day's paper.’
    • ‘When this guy dies, he's going to receive ten obituaries on the front page of the Times.’
    • ‘We need to know the year of birth and exact date of death of the deceased, and we prefer obituaries to state the cause of death.’
    • ‘We respected the wishes of Patricia's friends, who wrote the obituary as they saw fit.’
    • ‘Alongside is her name in black bold square print - the kind used in obituary notices.’
    • ‘In the newspaper the following day his contact was in the obituary section, seems he had died of an overdose.’
    • ‘When I got home, I scanned newspapers and teletext looking for his obituary.’
    • ‘One of the regulars was the man who walked around the town pasting large posters on the walls, usually obituary notices.’
    • ‘How do you write a decent obituary when the corpse-to-be is doing such a good job of it himself?’
    • ‘Some have doubtless already written their heavyweight obituaries about the man with the dodgy chin who was the best of a bad bunch.’
    • ‘The obituaries have been written for Scotland's textile industry so many times that it would be easy to believe the sector no longer exists.’
    death notice, eulogy
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/əˈbiCHəˌwerē/ /əˈbɪtʃəˌwɛri/


Early 18th century from medieval Latin obituarius, from Latin obitus ‘death’, from obit- ‘perished’, from the verb obire.