a vocation requiring knowledge of some department of learning or science: the profession of teaching. Compare learned profession.
any vocation or business.
the body of persons engaged in an occupation or calling: to be respected by the medical profession.
the act of professing; avowal; a declaration, whether true or false: professions of dedication.
the declaration of belief in or acceptance of religion or a faith: the profession of Christianity.
a religion or faith professed.
the declaration made on entering into membership of a church or religious order.

1175–1225; Middle English < Medieval Latin professiōn- (stem of professiō) the taking of the vows of a religious order. See professed, -ion

professionless, noun
nonprofession, noun

1. calling, employment. See occupation. 4. asseveration, assertion, protestation. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
profession (prəˈfɛʃən)
1.  an occupation requiring special training in the liberal arts or sciences, esp one of the three learned professions, law, theology, or medicine
2.  the body of people in such an occupation
3.  the act of professing; avowal; declaration
4.  a.  Also called: profession of faith a declaration of faith in a religion, esp as made on entering the Church of that religion or an order belonging to it
 b.  the faith or the religion that is the subject of such a declaration
[C13: from Medieval Latin professiō the taking of vows upon entering a religious order, from Latin: public acknowledgment; see profess]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

early 13c., "vows taken upon entering a religious order," from O.Fr. profession, from L. professionem (nom. professio) "public declaration," from professus (see profess). Meaning "occupation one professes to be skilled in" is from 1540s; meaning "body of persons engaged
in some occupation" is from 1610; as a euphemism for "prostitution" (e.g. oldest profession) it is recorded from 1888.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
The innate conservatism of the academic profession does not help.
There is plenty the government, the legal profession and others can do to
  improve this shameful state of affairs.
Ask students that have the same profession to gather in teams and compare their
The profession is heading toward its biggest crisis.
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