1

portion

noun por·tion \ ˈpȯr-shən \
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of portion

1 : an individual's part or share of something: such as
a : a share received by gift or inheritance
b : dowry
c : enough food especially of one kind to serve one person at one meal
2 : an individual's lot, fate, or fortune : one's share of good and evil
3 : an often limited part of a whole

Examples of portion in a Sentence

  1. A portion of the donations will be given to the orphanage.

  2. Portions of land were used for farming.

  3. A considerable portion of the city was flooded.

  4. The restaurant gives large portions.

  5. She divided the pie into six equal portions.

Recent Examples of portion from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of portion

Middle English porcioun, from Anglo-French, from Latin portion-, portio; akin to Latin part-, pars part

Synonym Discussion of portion

part, portion, piece, member, division, section, segment, fragment mean something less than the whole. part is a general term appropriate when indefiniteness is required.
    • they ran only part of the way
portion implies an assigned or allotted part.
    • cut the pie into six portions
piece applies to a separate or detached part of a whole.
    • a puzzle with 500 pieces
member suggests one of the functional units composing a body.
    • a structural member
division applies to a large or diversified part.
    • the manufacturing division of the company
section applies to a relatively small or uniform part.
    • the entertainment section of the newspaper
segment applies to a part separated or marked out by or as if by natural lines of cleavage.
    • the retired segment of the population
fragment applies to a part produced by or as if by breaking off.
    • only a fragment of the play still exists
fate, destiny, lot, portion, doom mean a predetermined state or end. fate implies an inevitable and usually an adverse outcome.
    • the fate of the submarine is unknown
destiny implies something foreordained and often suggests a great or noble course or end.
    • the country's destiny to be a model of liberty to the world
lot and portion imply a distribution by fate or destiny, lot suggesting blind chance
    • it was her lot to die childless
, portion implying the apportioning of good and evil.
    • remorse was his daily portion
doom distinctly implies a grim or calamitous fate.
    • if the rebellion fails, his doom is certain

2

portion

verb

Definition of portion

portioned; portioning play \ˈpȯr-sh(ə-)niŋ\
transitive verb
1 : to divide into portions : distribute
  • portioned out the food equally
2 : to allot a dowry to : dower

Examples of portion in a Sentence

  1. The work was portioned to each member of the staff.

  2. portioned out the medical supplies equally

Recent Examples of portion from the Web

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

First Known Use of portion

14th century


PORTION Defined for English Language Learners

portion

noun

Definition of portion for English Language Learners

  • : a part of a larger amount, area, etc.

  • : a part of something that is shared with other people

  • : the amount of food that is served to a person at one time


portion

verb

Definition of portion for English Language Learners

  • : to divide (something) into parts and give those parts to people


PORTION Defined for Kids

1

portion

noun por·tion \ ˈpōr-shən \

Definition of portion for Students

1 : a part or share of a whole
2 : serving
  • a large portion of pasta

2

portion

verb

Definition of portion for Students

portioned; portioning
: to divide into parts : distribute
  • Kimki portioned work for each one in the tribe …
  • —Scott O'Dell, Island of the Blue Dolphins


Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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

WORD OF THE DAY

food, provisions, or a tasty dish

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
True or False

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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