separation

noun
sep·​a·​ra·​tion | \ ˌse-pə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce separation (audio) \

Definition of separation

1 : the act or process of separating : the state of being separated
2a : a point, line, or means of division
b : an intervening space : gap the separation between wheel spokes
3a : cessation of cohabitation between a married couple by mutual agreement or judicial decree
b : termination of a contractual relationship (such as employment or military service)

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Examples of separation in a Sentence

After a separation of 30 years, she visited her family in Cuba. Moving away meant separation from his family.

Recent Examples on the Web

President Trump signed an executive order that stopped family separations at the border in June. Caleb Parke, Fox News, "Texas won’t use taxpayer funds to educate illegal immigrants held at the border," 2 Oct. 2018 The administration was under a court mandate to reunify families separated between early May and June 20, when President Donald Trump signed an executive order that stopped separations. Colleen Long, BostonGlobe.com, "Trump administration says 57 small children reunited with family, 46 deemed ineligible," 12 July 2018 The administration was under a court mandate to reunify families separated between early May and June 20, when President Donald Trump signed an executive order that stopped separations. Colleen Long, chicagotribune.com, "Trump administration says eligible migrant children reunited with families, but some parents already deported," 12 July 2018 Trump signed an executive order last week to stop the family separations, but so far more than 2,000 remain away from their parents. Daniella Silva /, NBC News, "Federal officers move to reopen Portland ICE building closed over protests," 28 June 2018 Related stories from Fort Worth Star Telegram Texas Democrat: 'There's a special place in hell' for leaders who didn't stop family separationsThe children attend on-site lessons with a teacher from the Fort Worth school district, Cortney said. Diane Smith And Anna M. Tinsley, star-telegram, "Fort Worth shelter has seen a 'revolving door' of immigrant children," 27 June 2018 Trump eventually put an end to family separation with an executive order after weeks of backlash. Amanda Sakuma, Vox, "John Kelly’s exit interview lifts the curtain on the chaos within the Trump White House," 30 Dec. 2018 After a nationwide outcry, Trump signed an executive order calling for an end to the separations. Rafael Carranza, azcentral, "Rights group claims family separations continue at border, despite Trump's executive order," 13 July 2018 But the president backed off following a national and international uproar, ordering an end to the separations on June 20. Colleen Long, The Christian Science Monitor, "Families reunited, then deported to Guatemala," 12 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for separation

Last Updated

17 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for separation

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

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More Definitions for separation

separation

noun

English Language Learners Definition of separation

: the act of separating people or things or the state of being separated
: a situation in which a husband and wife live apart from each other

separation

noun
sep·​a·​ra·​tion | \ ˌse-pə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce separation (audio) \

Kids Definition of separation

1 : the act of setting or pulling apart : the state of being set or pulled apart
2 : a point or line at which something is divided
3 : a space between The buildings have a narrow separation.

separation

noun
sep·​a·​ra·​tion | \ ˌsep-ə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce separation (audio) \

Medical Definition of separation

1 : the process of isolating or extracting from or of becoming isolated from a mixture also : the resulting state

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separation

noun
sep·​a·​ra·​tion | \ ˌse-pə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce separation (audio) \

Legal Definition of separation

1 : cessation of cohabitation between a married couple by mutual agreement with intent that it be permanent also : legal separation — compare divorce

Note: In some cases in which the estrangement is extreme, a separation is considered to have occurred even when the couple retain the same residence if they have stopped communicating and engaging in sexual relations and intend to be separated.

2 : termination of a contractual relationship (as employment or military service)

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Comments on separation

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