following an occupation as a means of livelihood or for gain: a professional builder.
of, pertaining to, or connected with a profession: professional studies.
appropriate to a profession: professional objectivity.
engaged in one of the learned professions: A lawyer is a professional person.
following as a business an occupation ordinarily engaged in as a pastime: a professional golfer.
making a business or constant practice of something not properly to be regarded as a business: “A salesman,” he said, “is a professional optimist.”
undertaken or engaged in as a means of livelihood or for gain: professional baseball.
of or for a professional person or his or her place of business or work: a professional apartment; professional equipment.
done by a professional; expert: professional car repairs.
a person who belongs to one of the professions, especially one of the learned professions.
a person who earns a living in a sport or other occupation frequently engaged in by amateurs: a golf professional.
an expert player, as of golf or tennis, serving as a teacher, consultant, performer, or contestant; pro.
a person who is expert at his or her work: You can tell by her comments that this editor is a real professional.

1740–50; profession + -al1

professionally, adverb
interprofessional, adjective
interprofessionally, adverb
pseudoprofessional, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
professional (prəˈfɛʃənəl)
1.  of, relating to, suitable for, or engaged in as a profession
2.  engaging in an activity for gain or as a means of livelihood
3.  a.  extremely competent in a job, etc
 b.  (of a piece of work or anything performed) produced with competence or skill
4.  undertaken or performed for gain or by people who are paid
5.  a person who belongs to or engages in one of the professions
6.  a person who engages for his livelihood in some activity also pursued by amateurs
7.  a person who engages in an activity with great competence
8.  an expert player of a game who gives instruction, esp to members of a club by whom he is hired

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 15c., of religious orders; 1747 of careers (especially of the skilled or learned trades from c.1793); see profession. Meaning "one who does X for a living" is from 1798; opposed to amateur from 1851. The noun is recorded from 1811.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
The few people who have committed themselves to the inquiry have done so at
  great risk, professionally and sometimes physically.
And it will be financed smartly and professionally, with a view toward the main
  event and a wariness of distracting sideshows.
She was there from the first sentence, bemused and professionally interested.
So far, it's been successful, professionally and personally.
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