tradition

noun
tra·​di·​tion | \ trə-ˈdi-shən How to pronounce tradition (audio) \

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 How to pronounce traditional (audio) , -​ˈdi-​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective
traditionally adverb
traditionless \ trə-​ˈdi-​shən-​ləs How to pronounce traditionless (audio) \ 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

As is tradition, a Midnight Quadrille commenced as the clock struck 12 and all the attendees joined in on the famous dance. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "Opera Divas and Debutantes: Inside the 64th Annual Viennese Opera Ball," 5 Feb. 2019 Still lifes have a long tradition, from Renaissance paintings to all those composed grain bowls flooding Instagram. Diana Budds, Curbed, "The most bizarre and brilliant projects from a Dutch design fair," 5 Nov. 2018 And, every minute or so for much of the morning proceedings, there were the largely female protestors, each of them exacting their own tiny revenge against civilization’s long tradition of men talking over women. Megan Angelo, Glamour, "THIS Is Must-See TV: All the Drama You Missed on Day One of Brett Kavanaugh’s Confirmation Hearings," 4 Sep. 2018 For viewers used to the post-Renaissance Western pictorial tradition, the representation of figures, time and space is a bit of a shock. Sharmila Mukherjee, The Seattle Times, "SAM’s ‘Peacock in the Desert’ opens the doors of our perception to the marvelous," 2 Jan. 2019 Speaking of showcasing different traditions, Hallmark has been evolving over the last few years. Jessica Radloff, Glamour, "Why Alexa PenaVega Loves Starring in Hallmark Christmas Movies," 23 Dec. 2018 From the publisher: From Fox News' politics editor Chris Stirewalt -- a fun and lively account of America's populist tradition, from Andrew Jackson and Teddy Roosevelt, to Ross Perot, Pat Buchanan, and Donald Trump. Fox News, "'Every Man a King: A Short, Colorful History of American Populists' by Chris Stirewalt," 10 Sep. 2018 These stories are funny and moving and peopled by Southern characters grappling with privilege, tradition, and stasis. Caroline Rogers, Southern Living, "10 Books by Southern Writers We Bet You Haven’t Read Yet," 29 June 2018 The drink is a riff on the Old Fashioned, inspired by Twenty Broad’s design which echoes the influence of the area's Beaux-Arts-style architectural tradition. Elle Decor Editors, ELLE Decor, "Designer Cocktail: Old Mr. Johnson," 23 Jan. 2019

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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Last Updated

13 Mar 2019

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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 How to pronounce tradition (audio) \

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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