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[dih-vur-zhuh n, -shuh n, dahy-] /dɪˈvɜr ʒən, -ʃən, daɪ-/
the act of diverting or turning aside, as from a course or purpose:
a diversion of industry into the war effort.
a channel made to divert the flow of water from one course to another or to direct the flow of water draining from a piece of ground.
British. a detour on a highway or road.
distraction from business, care, etc.; recreation; amusement; a pastime:
Movies are his favorite diversion.
Military. a feint intended to draw off attention from the point of main attack.
Origin of diversion
1590-1600; < Medieval Latin dīversiōn- (stem of dīversiō), equivalent to Latin dīvers(us) diverse + -iōn- -ion
Related forms
prediversion, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for diversion
  • Reading, where it exists at all, has largely become an unprofitable wing of the diversion industry.
  • Once these measures were in place, the diversion plan could be reconsidered.
  • Only about half of this important watershed is left today due to water diversion and draining.
  • These tales have spawned legal battles, comics-page yarns, and endless dinner-table diversion.
  • Your weekly diversion is a little puzzle about four knights and four dragons.
  • Fear itself has changed, from an obstacle to a diversion.
  • Your two minutes of brain-sizzling diversion can be found here.
  • After a day of playing, relaxing by the beach was a welcome diversion.
  • Even more useful for the forests would be diversion of fuel source to the various weeds that plague the world.
  • The diversion menu is larger, with lots of screen tools and toys to fill their leisure hours.
British Dictionary definitions for diversion


the act of diverting from a specified course
(mainly Brit) an official detour used by traffic when a main route is closed
something that distracts from business, etc; amusement
(military) a feint attack designed to draw an enemy away from the main attack
Derived Forms
diversional, diversionary, adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for diversion

early 15c., "diverse condition;" c.1600 "act of diverting," from Middle French diversion, from Late Latin diversionem (nominative diversio), noun of action from past participle stem of Latin divertere (see divert).

Sense of "amusement, entertainment" is first recorded 1640s. Hence, divertimento (1823), from the Italian form; originally "a musical composition designed primarily for entertainment."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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