passion

noun
pas·​sion | \ ˈpa-shən How to pronounce passion (audio) \

Definition of passion

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 Bach's St. Matthew Passion
2 obsolete : suffering
3 : the state or capacity of being acted on by external agents or forces moldable and not moldable … and many other passions of matter— Francis Bacon
4a(1) : emotion his ruling passion is greed
(2) passions plural : the emotions as distinguished from reason a study of the passions
b : intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction with enough passion to make a great poet— W. B. Yeats
c : an outbreak of anger a crime of passion
5a : ardent affection : love He had never felt such passion for any woman but her.
b : a strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object, or concept a passion for chess a passion for opera
c : sexual desire a look of passion in her face
d : an object of desire or deep interest

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Other Words from passion

passionless \ ˈpa-​shən-​ləs How to pronounce passionless (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for 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

Examples of passion in a Sentence

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 The gods themselves had passions and frailties—these are the stuff of the myths. — James Salter, New Yorker, 4 Aug. 1997 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 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 Everyone could see the passion in his approach to the work. a controversy that has stirred passions in Congress Her performance is full of passion and originality. She spoke with passion about preserving the building. The crime was committed in a fit of passion. Music has always been his passion. She developed a passion for opera. a student with a passion for literature
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Recent Examples on the Web

But of course there remains an important one sometimes, and that is love, the passion for this game. Christopher Clarey, New York Times, "Rafael Nadal Doesn’t Fall for Nick Kyrgios’s Bag of Tricks," 4 July 2019 Still, Gorham grew until the American passion for silver began to flag. Cate Mcquaid, BostonGlobe.com, "With this glittering display of silver, a Providence rags-to-riches tale," 3 July 2019 Jonquel Jones found a basketball home where the passion matches her own. Dom Amore, courant.com, "Dom Amore: As Jonquel Jones flourishes with Connecticut Sun, she hopes to create opportunities back home in Bahamas," 1 July 2019 Few candidates today could inspire the passion Florence Ellinwood Allen did nearly 100 years ago during her historic run for judge. Andrea Simakis, cleveland.com, "Before RBG, a Cleveland judge made history; it’s time to recognize Unstoppable Florence Allen: Andrea Simakis," 30 June 2019 And with plenty of samples throughout, the sessions don’t bog down the folks who just want a glimpse into why the passion for melting sweets is so long-lasting. Naomi Tomky, Fortune, "How to Get a Degree in Gelato," 22 June 2019 This is an intensely melancholy movie that digs deep into the passions and paradoxes of a vanishing black America. Jake Coyle, Detroit Free Press, "‘Last Black Man in San Francisco’ is a soulful lament," 20 June 2019 In fact, most of the best parts of our constitutional order are undemocratic and act as counters to the popular passions of democracy, which our Founding Fathers understood, feared, and held in contempt for good reason. Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, "The Wrong Bogeymen," 19 June 2019 Additionally, a hallmark of elite status was one’s ability to keep the passions under good regulation. Susan Broomhall, Quartzy, "The secret to the Mona Lisa’s enduring allure," 15 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'passion.' 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 passion

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

History and Etymology for passion

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

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Statistics for passion

Last Updated

8 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for passion

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

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More Definitions for passion

passion

noun

English Language Learners 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

passion

noun
pas·​sion | \ ˈpa-shən How to pronounce passion (audio) \

Kids Definition of passion

1 : a strong feeling or emotion He spoke with passion.
2 : an object of someone's love, liking, or desire Art is my passion.
3 : strong liking or desire : love She has a passion for music.

passion

noun
pas·​sion | \ ˈpa-shən How to pronounce passion (audio) \

Legal Definition of passion

: 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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Comments on passion

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appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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