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noun pas·sion \ˈpa-shən\

Simple Definition of passion

  • : a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something

  • : a strong feeling (such as anger) that causes you to act in a dangerous way

  • : a strong sexual or romantic feeling for someone

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of passion

  1. 1 often capitalized a :  the sufferings of Christ between the night of the Last Supper and his death b :  an oratorio based on a gospel narrative of the Passion

  2. 2 obsolete :  suffering

  3. 3 :  the state or capacity of being acted on by external agents or forces

  4. 4 a (1) :  emotion <his ruling passion is greed> (2) plural :  the emotions as distinguished from reason b :  intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction c :  an outbreak of anger

  5. 5 a :  ardent affection :  love b :  a strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object, or concept c :  sexual desire d :  an object of desire or deep interest

passionless play \-ləs\ adjective

Examples of passion in a sentence

  1. If anyone had asked me what my passions were, I would have said building fires, climbing cliffs, going on long hikes in the woods … —Paul Theroux, Newsweek, 6 Aug. 2001

  2. The gods themselves had passions and frailties—these are the stuff of the myths. —James Salter, New Yorker, 4 Aug. 1997

  3. The skin is dry and as chaste and beautiful as old paper. But I remember the passion inspired by those fingers, their gifted, sly, infinitely provocative caresses and gestures. —Richard Selzer, Discover, February 1994

  4. Polo was the Khan's passion. He cared for little else, and when his armies moved, he moved with them, because he couldn't stand to be without the game. —Hunter S. Thompson, Rolling Stone, 15 Dec. 1994

  5. Everyone could see the passion in his approach to the work.

  6. a controversy that has stirred passions in Congress

  7. Her performance is full of passion and originality.

  8. She spoke with passion about preserving the building.

  9. The crime was committed in a fit of passion.

  10. Music has always been his passion.

  11. She developed a passion for opera.

  12. a student with a passion for literature

Origin of passion

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin passion-, passio suffering, being acted upon, from Latin pati to suffer — more at patient

First Known Use: 13th century

Synonym Discussion of passion

passion, fervor, ardor, enthusiasm, zeal mean intense emotion compelling action. passion applies to an emotion that is deeply stirring or ungovernable <was a slave to his passions>. fervor implies a warm and steady emotion <read the poem aloud with great fervor>. ardor suggests warm and excited feeling likely to be fitful or short-lived <the ardor of their honeymoon soon faded>. enthusiasm applies to lively or eager interest in or admiration for a proposal, cause, or activity <never showed much enthusiasm for sports>. zeal implies energetic and unflagging pursuit of an aim or devotion to a cause <preaches with fanatical zeal>.

synonyms see in addition feeling

Rhymes with passion

PASSION Defined for Kids


noun pas·sion \ˈpa-shən\

Definition of passion for Students

  1. 1 :  a strong feeling or emotion <He spoke with passion.>

  2. 2 :  an object of someone's love, liking, or desire <Art is my passion.>

  3. 3 :  strong liking or desire :  love <She has a passion for music.>

Law Dictionary


noun pas·sion \ˈpa-shən\

Legal Definition of passion

  1. :  intense, driving, or overpowering feeling or emotion; especially :  any violent or intense emotion that prevents reflection — see also heat of passion

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