petition

noun
pe·​ti·​tion | \ pə-ˈti-shən How to pronounce petition (audio) \

Definition of petition

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an earnest request : entreaty
2a : a formal written request made to an official person or organized body (such as a court)
b : a document embodying such a formal written request
3 : something asked or requested

petition

verb
petitioned; petitioning\ pə-​ˈti-​sh(ə-​)niŋ How to pronounce petitioning (audio) \

Definition of petition (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to make a request to : solicit

intransitive verb

: to make a request especially : to make a formal written request

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Other Words from petition

Noun

petitionary \ pə-​ˈti-​shə-​ˌner-​ē How to pronounce petitionary (audio) \ adjective

Verb

petitioner \ pə-​ˈti-​sh(ə-​)nər How to pronounce petitioner (audio) \ noun

Examples of petition in a Sentence

Noun They collected 2,000 signatures on a petition demanding that women be allowed to join the club. Would you like to sign our petition? We presented a petition to the legislature to change the law. She filed a petition for divorce. We ask you to hear our petition. Verb The organization petitioned the government to investigate the issue. All people had the right to petition the king for help. She petitioned to join their club.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun She and any other candidates for Sandoval’s seat have to file nominating petitions with the state election board by Dec. 9 to qualify for the March 17 primary. Lisa Donovan, chicagotribune.com, "The Spin: There’s definitely a lingering hangover in the Johnson case," 4 Dec. 2019 Another petition was presented in July demanding an end to plastic pollution under the Clean Water Act. Peter Fimrite, SFChronicle.com, "Environmental groups ban together to demand action on plastics from EPA," 3 Dec. 2019 Discretionary licensing, a federal bar on interstate handgun sales, and bans on assault weapons and large-capacity magazines are among the five cases with pending petitions in the justices’ inboxes. The Economist, "The Supreme Court hears its first gun-rights case in a decade," 2 Dec. 2019 The Court of Appeals last month denied Armor's petition to appeal the trial judge's ruling, which put the cases back on schedule. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Criminal trial again set in motion for former Milwaukee County Jail medical provider," 2 Dec. 2019 Other names can be submitted through a petition process until Dec. 5. Greg Garrison | Ggarrison@al.com, al, "Three bishop candidates – 2 women – make list for Episcopal Church," 2 Dec. 2019 Still, if all 1,088 pages of petitions were filled with 10 valid signatures, that would amount to only 10,880. Andrew Oxford, azcentral, "Green Party no longer recognized as a political party in Arizona," 2 Dec. 2019 Pressure has been building for some time on the prime minister, who was also facing the growing threat of a humiliating parliamentary no-confidence petition. New York Times, "Iraq Prime Minister Says He Will Resign Amid Protests," 30 Nov. 2019 Other activist groups are expected to organize retail-oriented protests across France (link in French) today, and various online petitions are calling for a boycott of Black Friday. Annabelle Timsit, Quartz, "Black Friday’s environmental cost is sparking worldwide protests," 29 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb His range, steadiness and turnover-hoarding aptitude at free safety have powered the Steelers’ resurgence to such an extent that their fans might very well consider petitioning to rename the city after him. Ben Shpigel, New York Times, "The Best N.F.L. Trade of the Season? Look to Pittsburgh," 4 Dec. 2019 And to make things even more interesting, that decision came after the finalists — Oscar Murillo, Tai Shani, Helen Cammock and Lawrence Abu Hamdan — petitioned the jury to award the prize collectively. Washington Post, "The real Turner art prize is the aesthetic riddle we pondered along the way," 4 Dec. 2019 Residents petitioned to include the new conditions this summer. BostonGlobe.com, "Minnesota OKs medical cannabis for chronic pain, eye disease - The Boston Globe," 3 Dec. 2019 The case previously also listed the emails with BuzzFeed, but Unsworth's legal team pulled them from the suit and instead petitioned to use them as supporting evidence. Kerry Flynn, CNN, "Elon Musk heads to court for defamation trial over 'pedo guy' tweet," 2 Dec. 2019 Once petitioned, the judge must hold a hearing within 24 hours — or the next court day — to determine whether to grant the request, though the person in question does not have to be present for that hearing. Elise Schmelzer, The Denver Post, "Uncertainty remains as law enforcement, courts prepare for controversial red flag law to go into effect," 29 Nov. 2019 Rivers, a software engineer, was involved in petitioning the company to stop its work with governmental agencies like the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the US Customs and Border Protections. Wired, "Google Employees Protest to Fight for the 'Future of Tech'," 22 Nov. 2019 It was implemented in 2013 at $5 per kilowatt, but after this petition challenging the fee was filed, Alabama Power also petitioned the PSC to increase the fee to $5.42 per kilowatt. Dennis Pillion | Dpillion@al.com, al, "Alabama Power solar fee questioned in public hearing," 21 Nov. 2019 Prosecutors in both counties filed delinquency petitions against Hinkle and petitioned that he be waived to adult court. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Court affirms 'once an adult, always an adult' rule for young offenders," 12 Nov. 2019

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1607, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for petition

Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin petition-, petitio, from petere to seek, request — more at feather

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Time Traveler for petition

Time Traveler

The first known use of petition was in the 14th century

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Statistics for petition

Last Updated

8 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Petition.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/petitionary?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=p&file=petiti02. Accessed 14 December 2019.

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More Definitions for petition

petition

verb

English Language Learners Definition of petition

: to ask (a person, group, or organization) for something in a formal way

petition

noun
pe·​ti·​tion | \ pə-ˈti-shən How to pronounce petition (audio) \

Kids Definition of petition

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an earnest appeal
2 : a formal written request made to an authority

petition

verb
petitioned; petitioning

Kids Definition of petition (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make an often formal request to or for

Other Words from petition

petitioner noun

petition

noun
pe·​ti·​tion

Legal Definition of petition

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a formal written request made to an official person or body (as a court or board) a petition for equitable relief the creditor filed a petition for involuntary bankruptcy
2 : a document embodying a formal written request

Legal Definition of petition (Entry 2 of 2)

: to direct a petition to petition the court

intransitive verb

: to make a petition petition for relief

Other Words from petition

petitioner noun

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Comments on petition

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