predilection

noun
pre·​di·​lec·​tion | \ ˌpre-də-ˈlek-shən How to pronounce predilection (audio) , ˌprē-\

Definition of predilection

: an established preference for something a predilection for spicy food … a wonderfully spunky heroine with a smart mouth, a bad attitude and a predilection for trouble. [=a tendency to get into trouble]Publishers Weekly

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Choose the Right Synonym for predilection

predilection, prepossession, prejudice, bias mean an attitude of mind that predisposes one to favor something. predilection implies a strong liking deriving from one's temperament or experience. a predilection for travel prepossession suggests a fixed conception likely to preclude objective judgment of anything counter to it. a prepossession against technology prejudice usually implies an unfavorable prepossession and connotes a feeling rooted in suspicion, fear, or intolerance. a mindless prejudice against the unfamiliar bias implies an unreasoned and unfair distortion of judgment in favor of or against a person or thing. a strong bias toward the plaintiff

Predilection Has a Versatile Latin Root

Do you have a predilection for words whose histories conjure up colorful images of Wild West heroes, medieval knaves, Arabian princes, and intemperate gods, or are words with straightforward Latin roots more your style? If you favor the latter, you'll love "predilection." It's based on the Latin verb legere, which means "to gather" or "to read." That versatile root is also the source of many other familiar English words, including "collect," "lesson," "sacrilege," and "legume."

Examples of predilection in a Sentence

The predilection of certain upper-class Englishmen toward eccentricity and playacting lent itself well to this endeavor. — Robert D. Kaplan, The Arabists, 1993 Even seated in the witness chair, he did not remove the light-colored, belted raincoat that, in common with knee-high boots, is a predilection of the Nazi-minded and that, in his case, was nearly identical to the raincoat Hitler habitually wore. — Kay Boyle, "Preface from the Smoking …," 1950, in Words that Must Somehow be Said: Selected Essays of Kay Boyle 1927–19841985 The marine sergeants are generally tall fellows with unyielding spines and stiff upper lips, and very exclusive in their tastes and predilections. — Herman Melville, White Jacket, 1850 a young lad with a predilection for telling tall tales
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Recent Examples on the Web

Most creators also admitted to some anxiety linked to the left’s predilection for internecine conflict. Shaan Amin, The New Republic, "Can the Left Win YouTube?," 2 July 2019 Kids was mired in the predilections and obsessions of Korine and the director/photographer Larry Clark. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "Euphoria’s Familiar Moral Panic," 19 June 2019 Flores expertly lampoons the narcotraficante predilection for exotic collecting and baroque violence. Julian Lucas, Harper's magazine, "New Books," 10 May 2019 His sudden predilection coincided with the return of the first truly effective lead-off hitter the Padres have had in his tenure. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Padres notes: Offense not so offensive lately," 21 June 2019 At the heart of this predilection for the flight over the fight is a tacit ideology that is wildly out of step with the political reality of Trump’s America, where villains abound with almost comic ubiquity. Alex Pareene, The New Republic, "In search of the Democratic Party's fighting spirit," 20 June 2019 Because the tape provided seemingly concrete evidence of his predilections, DeRogatis writes that the singer’s camp had expected him to be indicted. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "Soulless and the Fallacy of R. Kelly’s Need for ‘Help’," 6 June 2019 Their home, which somehow manages to feel minimal despite their predilections, is filled with art and maps, books and cameras, boxes of old watches, shelves of sculptures and lots of dice, flowerpots and midcentury modern furniture. Deborah Stoll, SFChronicle.com, "Weekend estate-sale hunting with Trick Dog’s Josh Harris," 5 June 2019 Now, of course, Stone produces a beer for every palate and predilection. Paul Hodgins, latimes.com, "Adult Beverages: Beer makes inroads into wine’s world, with mixed results," 6 June 2019

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

1742, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for predilection

French prédilection, from Medieval Latin praediligere to love more, prefer, from Latin prae- + diligere to love — more at diligent

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Statistics for predilection

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for predilection

The first known use of predilection was in 1742

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More Definitions for predilection

predilection

noun

English Language Learners Definition of predilection

formal : a natural liking for something : a tendency to do or to be attracted to something

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