What word or phrase does your mother always say?


[voh-key-shuh n] /voʊˈkeɪ ʃən/
a particular occupation, business, or profession; calling.
a strong impulse or inclination to follow a particular activity or career.
a divine call to God's service or to the Christian life.
a function or station in life to which one is called by God:
the religious vocation; the vocation of marriage.
Origin of vocation
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English vocacio(u)n < Latin vocātiōn- (stem of vocātiō) a call, summons, equivalent to vocāt(us) past participle of vocāre to call (see -ate1) + -iōn- -ion
Can be confused
avocation, vocation.
vacation, vocation.
1. employment, pursuit. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for vocation
  • Although he could not have known it at the time, he had found his life's vocation.
  • But his vocation is computers, and he has always been fascinated with cryptography.
  • They'll be serious scientists seriously out of a vocation.
  • He thus belonged to the gentry, and it seems likely that he entered the church more as a profession than a vocation.
  • Democracy, the vocation of the elite is not among these values.
  • Because of a lack of jobs many have turned to retail as a vocation.
  • They have a calling, a vocation, to explore and transmit and encourage the development of knowledge.
  • Advocacy is not merely a skill but practically a vocation.
  • Nature, which incites his heresies inspires his true vocation.
  • It is the civilization, first of all, which gave me the idea of the writing vocation.
British Dictionary definitions for vocation


a specified occupation, profession, or trade
  1. a special urge, inclination, or predisposition to a particular calling or career, esp a religious one
  2. such a calling or career
Word Origin
C15: from Latin vocātiō a calling, from vocāre to call
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for vocation

early 15c., "spiritual calling," from Latin vocationem (nominative vocatio), literally "a calling," from vocatus "called," past participle of vocare "to call" (see voice (n.)). Sense of "one's occupation or profession" is first attested 1550s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for vocation

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for vocation

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with vocation

Nearby words for vocation