Why was clemency trending last week?


[uh-key-zhuh n] /əˈkeɪ ʒən/
a particular time, especially as marked by certain circumstances or occurrences:
They met on three occasions.
a special or important time, event, ceremony, celebration, etc.:
His birthday will be quite an occasion.
a convenient or favorable time, opportunity, or juncture:
This slack period would be a good occasion to take inventory.
the immediate or incidental cause or reason for some action or result:
What is the occasion for this uproar?
(in the philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead) the coincidence of the eternal objects forming a specific point-event.
occasions, Obsolete.
  1. needs or necessities.
  2. necessary business matters:
    to go about one's lawful occasions.
verb (used with object)
to give occasion or cause for; bring about.
on occasion, now and then; from time to time; occasionally:
She visits New York on occasion.
Origin of occasion
1350-1400; Middle English occasioun < Old French occasion < Latin occāsiōn- (stem of occāsiō), equivalent to oc- oc- + cās(us) (past participle of cadere to fall, befall) + -iōn- -ion
Related forms
preoccasioned, adjective
3. chance, opening. 4. motive, inducement, influence. See cause. 7. motivate, originate, produce, create. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for occasion
  • Be it a weekend escape or far-flung adventure, every occasion promises the chance for a great photograph.
  • On one occasion, she grabbed the skin under a whale shark's first dorsal fin as it cruised by.
  • She rationed her intake of food until, on more than one occasion, she collapsed of weakness.
  • It was a pretty festive occasion, there wasn't any singing or dancing, but everyone was happy.
  • Many ships anchored in the harbor were garlanded with flags and banners for the occasion.
  • As is pointed out on occasion, a few companies or consumers may over stretch the value of such testing results.
  • Our presentation began, consistent with the occasion, with a prolonged hug that prompted laughter and applause.
  • Make the distinction, and there is no occasion for any farther dispute.
  • She has also, on more than one occasion, attacked our beagle and tenaciously refused to let go.
  • If nothing else, post-tenure depression is an appropriate occasion for a reality check.
British Dictionary definitions for occasion


(sometimes foll by of) the time of a particular happening or event
(sometimes foll by for) a reason or cause (to do or be something); grounds: there was no occasion to complain
an opportunity (to do something); chance
a special event, time, or celebration: the party was quite an occasion
on occasion, every so often
rise to the occasion, to have the courage, wit, etc, to meet the special demands of a situation
take occasion, to avail oneself of an opportunity (to do something)
(transitive) to bring about, esp incidentally or by chance
See also occasions
Word Origin
C14: from Latin occāsiō a falling down, from occidere, from ob- down + cadere to fall
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for occasion

late 14c., "opportunity; grounds for action, state of affairs that makes something else possible; a happening, occurrence," from Old French ochaison, ocasion "cause, reason, excuse, pretext; opportunity" (13c.) or directly from Latin occasionem (nominative occasio) "opportunity, appropriate time," in Late Latin "cause," from occasum, occasus, past participle of occidere "fall down, go down," from ob "down, away" (see ob-) + cadere "to fall" (see case (n.1)). The notion is of a "falling together," or juncture, of circumstances.


mid-15c., "to bring (something) about," from occasion (n.), or else from Old French occasionner "to cause," from Medieval Latin occasionare, from Latin occasionem (see occasion (n.)). Related: Occasioned; occasioning.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with occasion
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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