re·​cep·​tion | \ ri-ˈsep-shən How to pronounce reception (audio) \

Definition of reception

1 : the act or action or an instance of receiving: such as
a : receipt the reception and distribution of funds
b : admission reception into the church
c : response, reaction the play met with a mixed reception
d : the receiving of a radio or television broadcast
e : the catching of a forward pass by a receiver
2 : a social gathering often for the purpose of extending a formal welcome

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Synonyms for reception


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Did You Know?

Reception is the noun form of receive. So at a formal reception, guests are received or welcomed or "taken in". A bad TV reception means the signal isn't being received well. When a new novel receives good reviews, we say it has met with a good critical reception. If it gets a poor reception, on the other hand, that's the same as saying that it wasn't well-received.

Examples of reception in a Sentence

The school held a reception for the new students and their families. He decided to run for a seat on the school committee only a year after his reception into the community. Her job is to deal with the reception of donations.
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Recent Examples on the Web Looking forward for the season, Vlastelica said the reception from fans for the Excelsior is a great sign for what’s to come. Washington Post, "As Overwatch League opens 2020 season, New York Excelsior shows home team advantage is real," 9 Feb. 2020 The show was celebrated in its original runs in London, but the reception has been more divided on Broadway, both among professional critics and regular attendees. Matthew Lopez, New York Times, "What I Wanted to Say in ‘The Inheritance.’ And What I Didn’t.," 7 Feb. 2020 Though the reception was the big party Julia envisioned, the couple’s ceremony was quite the tear jerker as Julia entered The Theodore through the venue’s dramatic double doors. al, "This Birmingham couple had 2 weddings in 2 countries," 5 Feb. 2020 The reception was warm, spontaneous and much-appreciated by the recipient, Vince Carter. Dallas News, "Rick Carlisle won his 500th game with the Mavericks, but memories of Vince Carter made his eyes light up brightest," 2 Feb. 2020 The reception has been enthusiastic, a reflection of the quality, with more than 300 restaurants and bars now offering Rosenstadt taps. oregonlive, "These are Portland’s 20 best breweries for 2020," 21 Jan. 2020 The opening reception is Jan. 16 from 6-8 p.m. with awards announced at 7 p.m. The show will close March 13. Staff Report, Houston Chronicle, "Assistance League of Houston art show opens Jan. 16," 27 Dec. 2019 The critical reception to The Rise of Skywalker hasn’t been great, either. Jason Karaian, Quartz, "“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” is turning middling reviews into massive money," 23 Dec. 2019 The receptions are 18th in the NFL and the yards are 16th. Mary Kay Cabot, cleveland, "Browns WR Jarvis Landry might need hip surgery in the offseason," 20 Dec. 2019

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for reception

Middle English recepcion, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French reception, from Latin reception-, receptio, from recipere

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Time Traveler for reception

Time Traveler

The first known use of reception was in the 15th century

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Statistics for reception

Last Updated

25 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Reception.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for reception


How to pronounce reception (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of reception

: the kind of welcome that someone or something is given
: a social gathering to celebrate something or to welcome someone
: the act or process of receiving, welcoming, or accepting something or someone


re·​cep·​tion | \ ri-ˈsep-shən How to pronounce reception (audio) \

Kids Definition of reception

1 : the act or manner of welcoming We got a warm reception from our new neighbors.
2 : a social gathering to celebrate something or welcome someone a wedding reception
3 : the ability to receive a radio or television broadcast
4 : the act of catching a pass thrown toward the opponent's goal

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