ova·​tion | \ ō-ˈvā-shən How to pronounce ovation (audio) \

Definition of ovation

1 : a ceremony attending the entering of Rome by a general who had won a victory of less importance than that for which a triumph was granted
2 : an expression or demonstration of popular acclaim especially by enthusiastic applause received a standing ovation

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for ovation


acclamation, applause, cheer, cheering, plaudit(s), rave(s), réclame


booing, hissing

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of ovation in a Sentence

He was welcomed by a warm ovation when he came out onto the stage. received a standing ovation for the masterly performance

Recent Examples on the Web

In the end, Courtney received a standing ovation for the performance. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'AGT' Star Courtney Hadwin's Time on the Show Was More Controversial Than People Realize," 14 Jan. 2019 Wade got a standing ovation following a video tribute during the first quarter timeout in his final regular-season game in the Bay Area before retiring after the season. Josh Dubow, The Seattle Times, "Cousins’ late free throws lead Warriors past Heat 120-118," 11 Feb. 2019 Standing ovations, wide shots of the theater, views of Oscar statues and other footage—a combination of filler, celebrity close-ups and up-next teasers—were counted together. Ellen Gamerman, WSJ, "Why Are the Oscars So Long? (Hint: 24 Minutes of Walking)," 21 Feb. 2019 His bicycle kick goal against Juventus in the quarter finals drew a standing ovation from all inside the stadium in Turin, and perhaps such a gesture could have contributed to Ronaldo seeking a move to the club. SI.com, "Juventus Chief Hints at Interest in Cristiano Ronaldo as Rumours Continue to Grow," 4 July 2018 The honest admission touched many viewers at home and in the audience, as Tori received a standing ovation. Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "Tori Spelling Shared an Emotional Childhood Story During Her 'Masked Singer' Reveal," 31 Jan. 2019 After she was done singing, Susan received a standing ovation from all the judges and audience. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "Susan Boyle's Golden Buzzer on 'AGT: The Champions' Sparks Heated Debate," 8 Jan. 2019 The 141 women who were in attendance, with many others in absentia, received a standing ovation from the crowd. Bridget Read, Vogue, "Aly Raisman and More Than 100 Women Join Onstage at the ESPYs to Accept the Arthur Ashe Courage Award," 19 July 2018 At the end of his song, Ray received a standing ovation from the judges and crowd. Erin Jensen, USA TODAY, "'America's Got Talent': Transgender singer Brody Ray's performance will give you chills," 27 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of ovation

1533, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for ovation

Latin ovation-, ovatio, from ovare to exult; akin to Greek euoi, interjection used in bacchic revels

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about ovation

Dictionary Entries near ovation








Statistics for ovation

Last Updated

8 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ovation

The first known use of ovation was in 1533

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for ovation



English Language Learners Definition of ovation

: an occurrence in which a group of people at a play, speech, sporting event, etc., show enthusiastic approval or appreciation by clapping their hands together over and over


ova·​tion | \ ō-ˈvā-shən How to pronounce ovation (audio) \

Kids Definition of ovation

: an expression of approval or enthusiasm made by clapping or cheering

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on ovation

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with ovation

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ovation

Spanish Central: Translation of ovation

Nglish: Translation of ovation for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ovation for Arabic Speakers

Comments on ovation

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


an act or instance of returning to life

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!