tradition

noun
tra·​di·​tion | \trə-ˈdi-shən \

Definition of tradition 

1a : an inherited, established, or customary pattern of thought, action, or behavior (such as a religious practice or a social custom)

b : a belief or story or a body of beliefs or stories relating to the past that are commonly accepted as historical though not verifiable … the bulk of traditions attributed to the Prophet …— J. L. Esposito

2 : the handing down of information, beliefs, and customs by word of mouth or by example from one generation to another without written instruction

3 : cultural continuity in social attitudes, customs, and institutions

4 : characteristic manner, method, or style in the best liberal tradition

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Other Words from tradition

traditional \ trə-​ˈdish-​nəl , -​ˈdi-​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective
traditionally adverb
traditionless \ trə-​ˈdi-​shən-​ləs \ adjective

Examples of tradition in a Sentence

One of our town's time-honored traditions is to have an Easter egg hunt the week before Easter. It is their tradition to give thanks before they start eating. There's an office tradition of wearing casual clothes on Fridays. They no longer follow the traditions of their ancestors. We broke with tradition and had goose for Thanksgiving instead of turkey. By tradition, the celebration begins at midnight. They no longer follow tradition. According to tradition, the goddess lies sleeping beneath the mountain.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Italian original was steeped in Jewish tradition (Mr Massini speaks Hebrew), a flavour that Mr Power retains. The Economist, "On stage, the saga of the Lehman brothers is a parable of America," 12 July 2018 If anything, hip-hop has simply followed in this tradition. Josie Duffy Rice, The Atlantic, "The Gospel According to Pusha T," 12 July 2018 The Reds will wear white with a checked print, with grey sleeves and red trim, keeping in tradition with familiar away and third kit designs seen in years gone by. SI.com, "PHOTO: Liverpool Unveil Trendy New Third Kit Ahead of 2018/19 Season," 12 July 2018 In the true, inexorable tradition of Greek tragedy, there is no getting out of it. Gary Thompson, Philly.com, "Think these movies are too gory? The Greek myths they're based on are worse," 12 July 2018 Tangerini follows closely in this ancient tradition, with one exception: color does not feature prominently in her oeuvre. Leila Mcneill, Smithsonian, "The Botanical Artist Who Translates Plant Science Into Beautiful Art," 10 July 2018 As an artist, his lasting influence was among cartoonists working in the tradition of alternative comics and graphic novels: Jaime Hernandez, Gilbert Hernandez, Ben Katchor, Charles Burns and Daniel Clowes. Jeet Heer, The New Republic, "Steve Ditko, the co-creator of Spider-Man and Doctor Strange, is dead.," 7 July 2018 Participants are certainly encouraged to share thoughts via social media, but in the grand old tradition of book clubs, there will be many in-person events hosted throughout the city. Rachel King, Fortune, "Book Clubs Are Really Having a Moment Right Now," 2 July 2018 Corzan, the 2018 Post-Tribune Boys Track Athlete of the Year, followed in the family tradition. Dave Melton, Post-Tribune, "Braden's punch: Chesterton's Braden Corzan picked as the 2018 Post-Tribune Boys Track Athlete of the Year," 26 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for tradition

Middle English tradicioun, from Middle French & Latin; Middle French tradicion, from Latin tradition-, traditio action of handing over, tradition — more at treason

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Statistics for tradition

Last Updated

6 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for tradition

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

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More Definitions for tradition

tradition

noun

English Language Learners Definition of tradition

: a way of thinking, behaving, or doing something that has been used by the people in a particular group, family, society, etc., for a long time

: the stories, beliefs, etc., that have been part of the culture of a group of people for a long time

—used to say that someone has qualities which are like the qualities of another well-known person or group of people from the past

tradition

noun
tra·​di·​tion | \trə-ˈdi-shən \

Kids Definition of tradition

1 : the handing down of information, beliefs, or customs from one generation to another

2 : a belief or custom handed down from one generation to another

tradition

noun
tra·​di·​tion

Legal Definition of tradition 

in the civil law of Louisiana : transfer or acquisition of property especially by delivery with intent of both parties to transfer the title delivery of the act of transfer or use of the right by the owner of the dominant estate constitutes traditionLouisiana Civil Code

History and Etymology for tradition

French, legal transfer

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