de·​vo·​tion | \ di-ˈvō-shən How to pronounce devotion (audio) , dē- \

Definition of devotion

1a : religious fervor : piety
b : an act of prayer or private worship usually used in plural during his morning devotions
c : a religious exercise or practice other than the regular corporate (see corporate sense 2) worship of a congregation
2a : the act of dedicating something to a cause, enterprise, or activity : the act of devoting the devotion of a great deal of time and energy
b : the fact or state of being ardently dedicated and loyal her devotion to the cause filial devotion
3 obsolete : the object of one's devotion

Choose the Right Synonym for 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

Devotion Has Latin Roots

Devotion and the verb devote come from the act of taking a vow (the Latin verb vovēre means "to vow"). Devote was once used as an adjective that could mean either "devout" or "devoted." While devout implies faithfulness of a religious nature ("a devout parishioner), devoted refers to one's commitment to another through love and loyalty ("a singer's devoted fans").

Examples of devotion in a Sentence

She has cared for the poor with selfless devotion. The devotion they felt for each other was obvious. The project will require the devotion of a great deal of time and money. They spend an hour each morning at their devotions.
Recent Examples on the Web The colonel wins a theatrical battle of wills with the camp’s commander, thereby earning the devotion of his fellow prisoners. Paul Baumann, National Review, 3 Mar. 2022 The cultish devotion among Otsuka’s swimmers sometimes strains credulity. Los Angeles Times, 2 Mar. 2022 Well, that and his New York state medical marijuana card and the unstinting devotion to his own craft. Washington Post, 11 Jan. 2022 Why in 2017, there’s been a swift and welcome resurgence of the format on various networks and streaming services, all hoping to recapture the devotion and impact of their predecessors. Emily Tannenbaum, Glamour, 10 Jan. 2022 Mandy Moore [Rebecca Pearson] said that the success of the show is truly because of the devotion from viewers. Chloe Melas, CNN, 4 Jan. 2022 His skill has won him the devotion of his celebrity clients like SZA, Ari Lennox, and Summer Walker. Gabi Thorne, Allure, 22 Dec. 2021 In a clip posted to Twitter on Tuesday, the Texas Republican and former U.S. Navy SEAL questioned the devotion of caucus conservatives to former President Donald Trump over the weekend. Chelsey Cox, USA TODAY, 8 Dec. 2021 Trump was thrilled to receive the fervent devotion of his Christian and white nationalist supporters, using his quasi-divinity to advance his own selfish interests. Ian Beacock, The New Republic, 6 Dec. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'devotion.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of devotion

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for devotion

see devote

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The first known use of devotion was in the 13th century

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Last Updated

13 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Devotion.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for devotion


de·​vo·​tion | \ di-ˈvō-shən How to pronounce devotion (audio) \

Kids Definition of devotion

1 : deep love or loyalty
2 : an act of giving (as effort or time) to something His devotion of many hours of work was rewarded.
3 : a religious exercise or practice (as prayers) especially that is private

More from Merriam-Webster on devotion

Nglish: Translation of devotion for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of devotion for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about devotion


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