noun, plural mortalities.
the state or condition of being subject to death; mortal character, nature, or existence.
the relative frequency of deaths in a specific population; death rate.
mortal beings collectively; humanity.
death or destruction on a large scale, as from war, plague, or famine.
Obsolete, death.

1300–50; Middle English mortalite < Middle French < Latin mortālitās. See mortal, -ity Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
mortality (mɔːˈtælɪtɪ)
n , pl -ties
1.  the condition of being mortal
2.  great loss of life, as in war or disaster
3.  the number of deaths in a given period
4.  mankind; humanity
5.  an obsolete word for death

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

mid-14c., "condition of being mortal," from Fr. mortalité (12c.), from L. mortalitem, from mortalis (see mortal). Meaning "widespread death" is from c.1400; meaning "number of deaths from some cause or in a given period" is from 1640s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

mortality mor·tal·i·ty (môr-tāl'ĭ-tē)

  1. The quality or condition of being mortal.

  2. Death rate.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Encyclopedia Britannica


in demographic usage, the frequency of death in a population

Learn more about mortality with a free trial on

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
It's also that each man is beginning to face his mortality.
The most deadly pandemics consist of low mortality – high mortality
We have seen that the intemperate suffer from a high rate of mortality, and the
  extremely profligate leave few offspring.
Even so, he feels the tug of mortality, and he has a lot left to accomplish.
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