re·​ver·​sion | \ ri-ˈvər-zhən How to pronounce reversion (audio) , -shən \

Definition of reversion

1a : the part of a simple estate remaining in the control of its owner after the owner has granted therefrom a lesser particular estate
b : a future interest in property left in the control of a grantor or the grantor's successor
2 : the right of succession or future possession or enjoyment
3a : an act or the process of returning (as to a former condition)
b : a return toward an ancestral type or condition : reappearance of an ancestral character
4 : an act or instance of turning the opposite way : the state of being so turned
5 : a product of reversion specifically : an organism with an atavistic character : throwback

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Synonyms & Antonyms for reversion



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Examples of reversion in a Sentence

His photos document the land's reversion to swamp. the reversion of the estate
Recent Examples on the Web The culprit is unrealistic expectations and reversion to the mean for the bubbly sectors that got them there. Spencer Jakab, WSJ, "Cathie Wood’s ARK Wasn’t Built for a Flood," 11 May 2021 The collective consciousness of society will demand a reversion to the old great trend. Brian Domitrovic, Forbes, "The Zeus Of Economics Has Died," 4 Apr. 2021 Perhaps the climate crisis will ultimately trigger a reversion to the mean. New York Times, "How Humanity Gave Itself an Extra Life," 27 Apr. 2021 Indeed, a reversion to something like ancestral behavior from before cells figured out how to work together may emerge in cancers — where cells adopt a potentially lethal mode of organizing themselves that sets proliferation ahead of cooperation. Quanta Magazine, "Cells Form Into ‘Xenobots’ On Their Own," 31 Mar. 2021 And a reversion to the mean on U.S. policies was inevitable after four years of draconian efforts by the administration of President Donald Trump to repel migrants. Editorial Board, Star Tribune, "A humanitarian storm at the border," 19 Mar. 2021 Many of the Bankhead Jones properties have a reversion clause in their deed. James Brandenburg, Outdoor Life, "This Proposed Sale of Public Land in Arkansas Is All Too Common for Hunters Everywhere," 13 Mar. 2021 Then came the mean-reversion trade—searching for out-of-favor businesses in out-of-favor industries that the market had given up on due to temporary impairments in the company's earning power. Jeff Henriksen, Forbes, "The Great Value Rotation: A Revival In The Performance Of Value Stocks Masks An Evolution In The Storied Investment Strategy," 4 Mar. 2021 The reversion to Phase 3, which is outlined in five administrative orders from Maryland Court of Appeals Chief Judge Mary Ellen Barbera, will go into effect Monday and last through Dec. 31. Dan Morse, Washington Post, "Maryland courts cancel jury trials for the rest of 2020 as covid cases spike," 20 Aug. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for reversion

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin reversion-, reversio act of returning, from revertere

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Time Traveler for reversion

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

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Statistics for reversion

Last Updated

13 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Reversion.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for reversion



English Language Learners Definition of reversion

technical + formal : an act or process of returning to an earlier condition or state
law : the returning of property to a former owner or to a person who received the right to it when the former owner died


re·​ver·​sion | \ ri-ˈvər-zhən, -shən How to pronounce reversion (audio) \

Medical Definition of reversion

1a : an act or the process of returning (as to a former condition)
b : a return toward an ancestral type or condition : reappearance of an ancestral character
2 : a product of reversion specifically : an organism with an atavistic character


re·​ver·​sion | \ ri-ˈvər-zhən How to pronounce reversion (audio) \

Legal Definition of reversion

1 : the returning of an estate upon its termination to the former owner or to his or her successor in interest
2a : the present vested interest in the residue of an estate that remains in its owner after the grant therefrom of a lesser estate (as a life estate) and that will commence in possession by operation of law upon termination of the lesser estate
b : the future interest in property left in a grantor or his or her successor in interest that is not subject to a condition precedent — compare possibility of reverter, remainder

Other Words from reversion

reversionary \ -​zhə-​ˌner-​ē How to pronounce reversion (audio) \ adjective

History and Etymology for reversion

Anglo-French, from Middle French, from Latin reversio act of turning back, from revertere to turn back

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