Definition of civil death in English:

Share this entry

civil death


rare or chiefly historical
The loss of a citizen’s privileges through life imprisonment, banishment, etc.
Example sentences
  • It is not open to a State to subject a citizen to a civil death, that is to deprive an individual of legal personality.
  • Breaching the social contract and ending up in jail doesn't necessarily mean that you lose all your rights: that would go back to the very dark ages, the idea of civil death.
  • He recalled the civil death of penal servitude.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: civ·il death

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.