trans·​fer·​ence | \ tran(t)s-ˈfər-ən(t)s How to pronounce transference (audio) , ˈtran(t)s-(ˌ)fər- \

Definition of transference

1 : an act, process, or instance of transferring : conveyance, transfer
2 : the redirection of feelings and desires and especially of those unconsciously retained from childhood toward a new object (such as a psychoanalyst conducting therapy)

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Other Words from transference

transferential \ ˌtran(t)s-​fə-​ˈren(t)-​shəl How to pronounce transference (audio) \ adjective

Examples of transference in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But the maintenance and transference of cultural practices like language and networks is an equally valuable advantage for second-generation family members who are culturally removed from their family’s homeland. Katherine Singh,, 14 May 2021 What’s beautiful and powerful and ethically valuable about translation is this intense attention to the other, and not only attention, but an identification with a sort of transference. Annabel Gutterman, Time, 27 Apr. 2021 Fowler also pointed to another study about knee restraints and transference of weight to the body, based on an experiment using dummies. Erin Donaghue, CBS News, 15 Apr. 2021 Will this person be particularly vulnerable (out of transference or simply gratitude) to the doctor? New York Times, 6 Apr. 2021 This fateful transference of genetic material occurred at least 35 million years ago and looks to be part of the genetic toolkit that make whiteflies such a formidable agricultural pest, reports Jonathan Lambert for Science News. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, 30 Mar. 2021 Freud, in particular, showered Western letters with now common phrases: repression, death wish, slip of the tongue, denial, transference. Katy Waldman, The New Yorker, 26 Mar. 2021 Baby Boomers are thought to be the wealthiest generation in history, which explains why this soon-to-come wealth transference is so impactful. Andres Garcia-amaya, Forbes, 19 Mar. 2021 That transference allows the game-makers to claim that a simulation of living deliberately allows the player to experience Thoreau’s own deliberate life. Sarah Ruth Bates, Wired, 5 Mar. 2021

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

1681, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for transference

Time Traveler

The first known use of transference was in 1681

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Statistics for transference

Last Updated

31 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Transference.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for transference



English Language Learners Definition of transference

technical : the act of moving something from one place to another
psychology : a process by which the feelings that you had for someone (such as a parent) when you were a child become directed to someone else (such as a psychoanalyst)


trans·​fer·​ence | \ tran(t)s-ˈfər-ən(t)s How to pronounce transference (audio) , ˈtran(t)s-(ˌ) How to pronounce transference (audio) \

Medical Definition of transference

: the redirection of feelings and desires and especially of those unconsciously retained from childhood toward a new object (as a psychoanalyst conducting therapy)


trans·​fer·​ence | \ trans-ˈfər-əns, ˈtrans-ˌfər- How to pronounce transference (audio) \

Legal Definition of transference

: an act, process, or instance of transferring

More from Merriam-Webster on transference

Nglish: Translation of transference for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about transference


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