Definition of martyr noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈmɑːtə(r)//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈmɑːrtər//
    Religious people
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  1. 1a person who suffers very much or is killed because of their religious or political beliefs the early Christian martyrs a martyr to the cause of freedom See related entries: Religious people
  2. 2(usually disapproving) a person who tries to get sympathy from other people by telling them how much he or she is suffering He makes a martyr of himself whenever it’s his turn to do the housework.
  3. 3martyr to something (informal) a person who suffers very much because of an illness, problem or situation She's a martyr to her nerves. I feel like a martyr to this vacuum cleaner.
  4. Word Origin Old English martir, via ecclesiastical Latin from Greek martur ‘witness’ (in Christian use, ‘martyr’).Extra examples Putting him to death would only make him a martyr. Stop playing the martyr. a martyr to the cause
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: martyr

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