Definition of death knell in English:

Share this entry

death knell


1The tolling of a bell to mark someone’s death.
Example sentences
  • Livra's words had set a bell tolling the death knell in the king's head.
  • Then he had vanished entirely, and she was left with her heart beginning to pound like a bell's death knell.
1.1Used to refer to the imminent destruction or failure of something: the chaos may sound the death knell for the UN peace plan
More example sentences
  • They have been joined by Scottish oyster farmers who fear the warning could sound the death knell for their industry, which is estimated to be worth £1.5m a year.
  • For a health care system already on life support due to extreme budget cuts, the extraction of $500,000,000 dollars would be the death knell.
  • It is hard to know for sure when - or whether - the death knell for a species has tolled.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: death knell

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.