Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary


noun de·vo·tion \di-ˈvō-shən, dē-\

Simple Definition of devotion

  • : a feeling of strong love or loyalty : the quality of being devoted

  • : the use of time, money, energy, etc., for a particular purpose

  • devotions : prayer, worship, or other religious activities that are done in private rather than in a religious service

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of devotion

  1. 1 a :  religious fervor :  piety b :  an act of prayer or private worship —usually used in plural c :  a religious exercise or practice other than the regular corporate worship of a congregation

  2. 2 a :  the act of devoting <devotion of time and energy> b :  the fact or state of being ardently dedicated and loyal <her devotion to the cause> <filial devotion>

  3. 3 obsolete :  the object of one's devotion

Examples of devotion in a sentence

  1. She has cared for the poor with selfless devotion.

  2. The devotion they felt for each other was obvious.

  3. The project will require the devotion of a great deal of time and money.

  4. They spend an hour each morning at their devotions.

13th Century

First Known Use of devotion

13th century

Synonym Discussion of devotion

fidelity, allegiance, fealty, loyalty, devotion, piety mean faithfulness to something to which one is bound by pledge or duty. fidelity implies strict and continuing faithfulness to an obligation, trust, or duty <marital fidelity>. allegiance suggests an adherence like that of citizens to their country <pledging allegiance>. fealty implies a fidelity acknowledged by the individual and as compelling as a sworn vow <fealty to the truth>. loyalty implies a faithfulness that is steadfast in the face of any temptation to renounce, desert, or betray <valued the loyalty of his friends>. devotion stresses zeal and service amounting to self-dedication <a painter's devotion to her art>. piety stresses fidelity to obligations regarded as natural and fundamental <filial piety>.

Other Religion (Eastern and Other) Terms

DEVOTION Defined for Kids


noun de·vo·tion \di-ˈvō-shən\

Definition of devotion for Students

  1. 1 :  deep love or loyalty

  2. 2 :  an act of giving (as effort or time) to something <His devotion of many hours of work was rewarded.>

  3. 3 :  a religious exercise or practice (as prayers) especially that is private

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up devotion? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a simplified speech bridging languages

Get Word of the Day daily email!


Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!


Which is a synonym of indolent?

philistine lazy frenetic melancholy
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.