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[rez-er-vey-shuh n] /ˌrɛz ərˈveɪ ʃən/
the act of keeping back, withholding, or setting apart.
the act of making an exception or qualification.
an exception or qualification made expressly or tacitly:
to accept something, but with inner reservations.
a tract of public land set apart for a special purpose, as for the use of an Indian tribe.
an arrangement to secure accommodations at a restaurant or hotel, on a boat or plane, etc.
the record kept or assurance given of such an arrangement:
Sorry, the hotel has no reservation under that name.
1350-1400; Middle English reservacioun < Middle French reservation, equivalent to reserv(er) to reserve + -ation -ation
Related forms
nonreservation, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for reservations
  • The reservations placed upon our adherence should not be misinterpreted.
  • Space is limited and reservations are required for these screenings.
  • And yet, this cultural unifier is also blamed for contributing to high levels of diabetes and obesity on reservations.
  • Their friends had reservations about the relationship.
  • Sales will be limited to mall security and wildlife reservations.
  • Anything that might suggest that the writer has reservations on the candidate is also deadly.
  • If you have serious reservations, maybe you shouldn't take it.
  • Not all students expressed reservations about their use of the technologies.
  • Bush may be comfortable with reservations and disagreement, and may probe for them among his advisers.
  • reservations can be made for buffet meals and viewing from the upper boxes.
British Dictionary definitions for reservations


the act or an instance of reserving
something reserved, esp hotel accommodation, a seat on an aeroplane, in a theatre, etc
(often pl) a stated or unstated qualification of opinion that prevents one's wholehearted acceptance of a proposal, claim, statement, etc
an area of land set aside, esp (in the US) for American Indian peoples
(Brit) the strip of land between the two carriageways of a dual carriageway
the act or process of keeping back, esp for oneself; withholding
(law) a right or interest retained by the grantor in property granted, conveyed, leased, etc, to another: a reservation of rent
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 reservations



late 14c., "act of reserving," from Old French reservation (14c.) and directly from Late Latin reservationem (nominative reservatio), noun of action from past participle stem of Latin reservare (see reserve (n.)). Mental sense is from c.1600. U.S. sense "tract of public land set aside for some special use" is recorded from 1789, originally in reference to the Six Nations in New York State. Meaning "act or fact of engaging a room, a seat, etc." is from 1904, originally American English.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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