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See also: Death and deaþ


 Death (disambiguation) on Wikipedia
 death on Wikipedia

Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English deeth, from Old English dēaþ, from Proto-West Germanic *dauþu, from Proto-Germanic *dauþuz (compare West Frisian dead, Dutch dood, German Tod, Swedish död, Norwegian død), from Proto-Indo-European *dʰówtus. More at die.



death (countable and uncountable, plural deaths)

  1. The cessation of life and all associated processes; the end of an organism's existence as an entity independent from its environment and its return to an inert, nonliving state.
    The death of my grandfather saddened the whole family.
    • 1680, T. K., The Kitchin-Phyſician; Or, a Guide for Good-Housewives in Maintaining Their Families in Health. [] [1], To cure the faintneſs of the Heart, page 71:
      But foraſmuch as this [the faintneſs of the Heart] is a very bad and heavy diſtemper, and a fore-runner of death, therefore 'tis called a timely death.
    • 1879, R[ichard] J[efferies], chapter 1, in The Amateur Poacher, London: Smith, Elder, & Co., [], →OCLC:
      Perhaps the reason why he seemed in such a ghastly rage was that he did not come by his death fairly.
    • 1900, Charles W. Chesnutt, chapter I, in The House Behind the Cedars:
      "‘Death,’" quoted Warwick, with whose mood the undertaker's remarks were in tune, "‘is the penalty that all must pay for the crime of living.’"
    • 2013 July-August, Philip J. Bushnell, “Solvents, Ethanol, Car Crashes & Tolerance”, in American Scientist:
      Furthermore, this increase in risk is comparable to the risk of death from leukemia after long-term exposure to benzene, []
    1. Execution (in the judicial sense).
      The serial killer was sentenced to death.
      • 2018 March 30, Chris Buckley, “‘Vicious’ Killer of 11 Women Gets Death Penalty in China”, in The New York Times[2], →ISSN, →OCLC, archived from the original on 31 March 2018, Asia Pacific‎[3]:
        Thirty years after Gao Chengyong embarked on a succession of 11 rape-murders of women in northwest China, a court sentenced him to death on Friday, following an investigation that involved sifting through 230,000 fingerprints.
  2. (often capitalized) The personification of death as a (usually male) hooded figure with a scythe; the Grim Reaper.
    When death walked in, a chill spread through the room.
  3. (preceded by the) The collapse or end of something.
    England scored a goal at the death to even the score at one all.
    • 1983, Robert R. Faulkner, Music on Demand, page 90:
      He may even find himself being blamed if the project dies a quick and horrible death at the box office or is unceremoniously axed by the network.
    1. (figuratively, especially followed by of-phrase) A cause of great stress, exhaustion, embarrassment, or another negative condition (for someone).
      This bake sale is going to be the death of me!
  4. (figurative) Spiritual lifelessness.


Derived terms[edit]

Pages starting with “death”.


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]




Appropriation of English death for a homophone.



death(デス) (desu

  1. (slang, humorous) Alternative spelling of です (desu)
    • [2000, 言語[4], volume 第 29 巻、第 1~4 号 [第 29 巻、第 1~4 号]:
      (please add an English translation of this quotation)]
    • 2009, ニホンちゃんしるブプレ: 国際情勢風刺寓話集[5], ニホンちゃんしるブプレ, →ISBN, page 32:
      ニホンちゃんの特別な存在になるにはカンコ君、あと半万年ほど時間がかかりそう death
      It will take about half a million more years for Kanko-kun to become special to Nihong-chan.
    • 2020 September 5, 剣名舞, 浅田有皆, M.C.☆LAW 大合本(全3巻)[6], ゴマブックス株式会社:
      (please add an English translation of this quotation)



death (plural deaths)

  1. Alternative form of daith