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The following statistics are based on the British National Corpus, so they are representative for the British English.

Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the noun occasion:

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Definition of the noun occasion

What does occasion mean as a name of something?

Occasion is one of the top 1000 most common nouns in the English language.

noun - plural: occasions

  1. an event that occurs at a critical time
    • example: it was needed only on special occasions
    • lexical domain: Natural Events - nouns denoting natural events
    • synonym of occasion: juncture
    • more generic terms: happening / natural event / occurrence / occurrent = an event that happens
    • more specific terms:
      • flood tide / climax = the highest point of anything conceived of as growing or developing or unfolding
      • conjuncture = a critical combination of events or circumstances
      • crisis = a crucial stage or turning point in the course of something
      • turning point / watershed / landmark = an event marking a unique or important historical change of course or one on which important developments depend
      • milestone = a significant event in your life
      • straits / head / pass = a difficult juncture
      • reality check = an occasion on which one is reminded of the nature of things in the real world
  2. a vaguely specified social event
    • example: an occasion arranged to honor the president
    • lexical domain: Natural Events - nouns denoting natural events
    • synonyms of occasion: affair / function / social function / social occasion
    • more generic term: social event = an event characteristic of persons forming groups
    • more specific terms:
      • party = an occasion on which people can assemble for social interaction and entertainment
      • celebration / jubilation = a joyful occasion for special festivities to mark some happy event
      • ceremonial occasion / ceremonial / observance / ceremony = a formal event performed on a special occasion
      • fundraiser = a social function that is held for the purpose of raising money
      • photo opportunity / photo op = an occasion that lends itself to (or is deliberately arranged for) taking photographs that provide favorable publicity for those who are photographed
      • sleepover = an occasion of spending a night away from home or having a guest spend the night in your home
  3. reason
    • example: there was no occasion for complaint
    • lexical domain: Motives - nouns denoting goals
    • more generic words: ground / reason = a rational motive for a belief or action
  4. the time of a particular event
    • example: on the occasion of his 60th birthday
    • lexical domain: Time - nouns denoting time and temporal relations
    • more generic word: time = a suitable moment
    • more specific word: meal = any of the occasions for eating food that occur by custom or habit at more or less fixed times
  5. an opportunity to do something
    • example: there was never an occasion for her to demonstrate her skill
    • lexical domain: States - nouns denoting stable states of affairs
    • more generic words: chance / opportunity = a possibility due to a favorable combination of circumstances
    • more specific terms: cut-rate sale / sales event / sale = an occasion (usually brief) for buying at specially reduced prices

Alternative definition of the noun occasion


  1. A favorable opportunity; a convenient or timely chance. [definition from 14th c.]
  2. An occurrence or state of affairs which causes some event or reaction; a motive or reason. [definition from 14th c.]
  3. Something which causes something else; a cause. [definition from 14th c.]
  4. [obsolete] An occurrence or incident. [definition 14th-18th c.]
  5. A particular happening; an instance or time when something occurred. [definition from 15th c.]
  6. Need; requirement, necessity. [definition from 16th c.]
  7. A special event or function. [definition from 19th c.]

Definition of the verb occasion

What does occasion mean as a doing word?

verb - inflections: occasioned | occasioning | occasions

  1. give occasion to
    • lexical domain: Creation - verbs of sewing, baking, painting, performing
    • more generic words: cause / do / make = give rise to
    • more specific word: inspire = supply the inspiration for

Alternative definition of the verb occasion


  1. [transitive] To give occasion to; to cause; to produce; to induce; as, to occasion anxiety.


  1. "Occasion" is a musical album of The Goslings.
    • released in (7 years ago)
  2. "Occasion" a.k.a. "Connick on Piano, Volume 2: Occasion": Occasion: Connick on Piano, Volume 2 is an instrumental album recorded in 2005, presenting Harry Connick, Jr. on piano and Branford Marsalis on saxophone, playing their own jazz compositions.

Phrases with Occasion

  1. on occasion
  2. to occasion
  3. social occasion
  4. ceremonial occasion
  5. Rise To The Occasion

Printed encyclopedias and other books with definitions for Occasion

Click on a title to look inside that book (if available):

Google previewKierkegaard as Humanist (1995)

Discovering My Self by Arnold B. Come

The occasion is a category of finitude.

Google previewPhilosophers of Process (1998)

by Douglas Browning, William T. Myers

Also the total provoked occasion is a totality involving many such examples of provocation. Again this phraseology is unfortunate; for the word "recipient" suggests a passivity which is erroneous. 4. Prehensions. — A more formal explanation is ...

Google previewSonic Warfare (2012)

Sound, Affect, and the Ecology of Fear by Steve Goodman

An occasion is a subject in respect to its...

An actual occasion is a limit case of an event or nexus, having only one member. The nexus, or collective entity, is an event in its own right, ...

Google previewStudies in Whitehead’s Philosophy (2012)

by Edward G. Ballard, Alan B. Brinkley, Ramona T. Cormier, Harold N. Lee, Stephen C. Pepper, Andrew J. Reck, Robert C. Whittemore

For each actual occasion is an atomic whole coordinately indivisible into its phases.

Google previewScience and the Modern World (2011)

by A. N. Whitehead

In contrast to the realm of possibility the inclusion of eternal objects within an actual occasion means that in respect to some of...

Thus the eternal relatedness is the form—the eZ8oq—; the emergent actual occasion is the superject of informed ...

Google previewWorld Without End (2005)

Christian Eschatology from a Process Perspective by Joseph A. Bracken

The occasion is the subject of its own becoming, which becomes the superjective being for superseding occasions.

Google previewPhysics and Whitehead (2004)

Quantum, Process, and Experience by Timothy E. Eastman, Hank Keeton

Thus, every occasion is a creative taking into account of the world-state that is given for it; and thus, too, every occasion is a ...

Google previewThe Metaphysics of Becoming (2014)

On the Relationship between Creativity and God in Whitehead and Supermind and Sachchidananda in Aurobindo by Thomas Padiyath

Each actual occasion is a self-actualizing concrescence.

Google previewDroll Stories (2014)

by Honore de Balzac

The occasion is a good one. Pasques Dieu ! come. There are rebels to subdue, and faith— ful knights are needed.” In less time than an old beggar would have taken to say thank you, the horses were bridled, saddled, and ready. Madame was ...

Google previewFood, Feasts, and Faith: An Encyclopedia of Food Culture in World Religions [2 volumes] (2017)

by Paul Fieldhouse

There is Pâkittiya in going in a body to receive a meal, except on the right occasion. Herein the right occasion is this: (to wit), when there is sickness, when robes are being given, when robes are being made, when on a journey (on foot), when ...

Google previewEncyclopedia of Clinical Psychology Set (2015)

by Robin L. Cautin, Scott O. Lilienfeld

and time-varying (occasion factor) components of psychopathological constructs, the TSO model enables researchers to examine risk factors separately for these components. This is especially ...

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias with entries for Occasion

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Photos about Occasion

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Small photo of Local (GCC / Gulf) kids playing traditional games and wearing traditional clothes during one of the Emirati culture occasion - Natural Colors More...

Video language resources about Occasion

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See also the pronunciation examples of Occasion!

Quotes about Occasion

Start living now. Stop saving the good china for that special occasion. Stop withholding your love until that special person materializes. Every day you are alive is a special occasion. Every minute, every breath, is a gift from God. (Mary Manin Morrissey)
more quotes about occasion...

Scrabble value of O1C3C3A1S1I1O1N1

The value of this 8-letter word is 12 points. It is included in the first and second editions of the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

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