Definition of Prophecy by Merriam-Webster


| ˈprä-fə-sē

or less commonly prophesy

plural prophecies
also prophesies


: an inspired utterance of a prophet


: the function or vocation of a prophet


: the inspired declaration of divine will and purpose


: a prediction of something to come

Synonyms for prophecy


auguring, augury, bodement, cast, forecast, forecasting, foretelling, predicting, prediction, presaging, prognosis, prognostic, prognosticating, prognostication, soothsaying, vaticination

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Examples of prophecy in a Sentence

The prophecies of the author have all come true.

She has the gift of prophecy.

Recent Examples on the Web

Then again, Voldemort was motivated by a famous prophecy that Harry would kill him.

Aja Romano, Vox, “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’s bonkers plot twist, explained,” 17 Nov. 2018

The prophecy was made under terms of absolute secrecy and hence, her training began – at least, that’s my theory.

Kelsey Stiegman, Seventeen, “See Meghan Markle Wear Her First Tiara as Homecoming Queen in High School,” 12 Jan. 2018

Many Twitter users decided that Saga obviously fulfilled some kind of prophecy, which definitely makes her queen…or at least prime minister, right?

De Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, “8-Year-Old Girl Pulls Ancient Sword From a Lake in Sweden,” 6 Oct. 2018

On its eastern edge are the Sibillini Mountains, named for the Appenine Sibyl—a legendary oracle who lived in a cave there and dispensed prophecies to medieval travelers.

Ken Jennings, Condé Nast Traveler, “This Italian Pine Forest Is Shaped Exactly Like…Italy,” 1 Oct. 2018

The commission wants to avoid taking an action that will make closure a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Laura Krantz,, “Mount Ida’s struggles included deficit, low graduation rate,” 2 May 2018

That claim turned out to be a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Nabih Bulos, The Seattle Times, “Seventeen years after Sept. 11, al-Qaida may be stronger than ever,” 10 Sep. 2018

Cormier fulfilled the prophecy at UFC 226, knocking down Miocic with a right hand to the jaw in the final minute of the first round, then pounding Miocic’s face with two more punches on the canvas to finish him.

Lance Pugmire,, “Daniel Cormier knocks out Stipe Miocic in first round for second belt at UFC 226,” 8 July 2018

The marketing gurus had cause for rejoice — at long last, the 22-year-old Jones had fulfilled their prophecy.

Brendan Marks, charlotteobserver, “NASCAR: A win by the young guns is nice. But the next winner likely will be …,” 11 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word ‘prophecy.’ Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of prophecy

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for prophecy

Middle English prophecie, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin prophetia, from Greek prophēteia, from prophētēs prophet

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Statistics for prophecy

Last Updated

26 Jan 2019

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More Definitions for prophecy


| ˈprä-fə-sē

Kids Definition of prophecy


: the ability to predict what will happen in the future

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