no·​tion | \ ˈnō-shən How to pronounce notion (audio) \

Definition of notion

1a(1) : an individual's conception or impression of something known, experienced, or imagined They had different notions of right and wrong.
(2) : an inclusive general concept arriving at the notion of law— Irving Babbitt
(3) : a theory or belief held by a person or group the notion of original sin
b : a personal inclination : whim He had a notion to try skydiving.
2 obsolete : mind, intellect
3 notions plural : small useful items : sundries found the thread she wanted among the shop's notions

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Choose the Right Synonym for notion

idea, concept, conception, thought, notion, impression mean what exists in the mind as a representation (as of something comprehended) or as a formulation (as of a plan). idea may apply to a mental image or formulation of something seen or known or imagined, to a pure abstraction, or to something assumed or vaguely sensed. innovative ideas my idea of paradise concept may apply to the idea formed by consideration of instances of a species or genus or, more broadly, to any idea of what a thing ought to be. a society with no concept of private property conception is often interchangeable with concept; it may stress the process of imagining or formulating rather than the result. our changing conception of what constitutes art thought is likely to suggest the result of reflecting, reasoning, or meditating rather than of imagining. commit your thoughts to paper notion suggests an idea not much resolved by analysis or reflection and may suggest the capricious or accidental. you have the oddest notions impression applies to an idea or notion resulting immediately from some stimulation of the senses. the first impression is of soaring height

Examples of notion in a Sentence

He has some pretty strange notions. She had a vague notion about what happened. The study disproves any notion that dolphins are not intelligent. She had a notion to try skydiving. a sewing shop that sells fabrics, books, tools, and notions
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Recent Examples on the Web

Bloom attacked both Mead and Benedict, and the notion that teachers who preach cultural relativism are turning American students into unpatriotic nihilists has been a recurrent theme in political rhetoric ever since. Louis Menand, The New Yorker, "How Cultural Anthropologists Redefined Humanity," 19 Aug. 2019 Even though Trump's own senior aides are baffled by the idea and are unsure whether to take it seriously, the notion is not without precedent. Author: Rick Noack, Claire Parker, Anchorage Daily News, "Greenland to Trump: We are not for sale," 16 Aug. 2019 The notion that people have a right not to be offended is also pernicious. The Economist, "As societies polarise, free speech is under threat. It needs defenders," 15 Aug. 2019 At the heart of various conspiracy theories about Epstein’s death is the notion that his sordid story dies with him. David Von Drehle, Twin Cities, "David Von Drehle: Keep investigating Jeffrey Epstein," 15 Aug. 2019 Grange, in a 1932 essay in the Saturday Evening Post, argued that the notion was ridiculous. Will Larkin,, "Ranking the 100 best Bears players ever: No. 31, Link Lyman," 6 Aug. 2019 The notion of Mike Clevinger in a one-game wild card is enticing; getting further will be more challenging. Gabe Lacques, USA TODAY, "MLB playoff rankings: Eight best World Series bets after the trade deadline," 31 July 2019 On top of that, the notion of celebrating ownership lining their pockets with a few extra bucks is rather regressive and repulsive. Dieter Kurtenbach, The Mercury News, "Kurtenbach: Farhan Zaidi aced his first Giants trade deadline," 31 July 2019 Despite being deemed the poorest country in the Middle East even before war broke out, young Yemenis sought to enroll in universities or start businesses, the notion of taking up arms back then was something of a far-flung profession. Fox News, "Family murder suicides in Yemen highlight depths of war-induced mental health crisis," 27 July 2019

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

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First Known Use of notion

1531, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(2)

History and Etymology for notion

Latin notion-, notio, from noscere

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Statistics for notion

Last Updated

22 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for notion

The first known use of notion was in 1531

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More Definitions for notion


no·​tion | \ ˈnō-shən How to pronounce notion (audio) \

Kids Definition of notion

1 : idea sense 2 I haven't the faintest notion what to do.
2 : whim We had a sudden notion to go swimming.
3 notions plural : small useful articles (as buttons, needles, and thread)

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More from Merriam-Webster on notion

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with notion

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for notion

Spanish Central: Translation of notion

Nglish: Translation of notion for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of notion for Arabic Speakers

Comments on notion

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


a usually brief trip or an expedition

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