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[tol-uh-rey-shuh n] /ˌtɒl əˈreɪ ʃən/
an act or instance of tolerating, especially of what is not actually approved; forbearance:
to show toleration toward the protesters.
permission by law or government of the exercise of religions other than an established religion; noninterference in matters of private faith and worship.
Origin of toleration
1510-20; < Latin tolerātiōn- (stem of tolerātiō). See tolerate, -ion
Related forms
tolerationism, noun
tolerationist, noun
nontoleration, noun
supertoleration, noun
1. See tolerance. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for toleration
  • Even today, many people are moved by his visionary message of universal toleration.
  • And thus toleration produced not only mutual indulgence, but even religious concord.
  • The rebel armies have grown up in his presence, and by his toleration.
  • Of course getting out of the closet increases their happiness and promotes toleration so maybe it is a virtuous circle.
  • Ottoman toleration was built on territorial indifference.
  • They represented everything that was hateful about modernity: equal rights, religious toleration and the destruction of tradition.
  • They are now aware that there are limits to toleration.
British Dictionary definitions for toleration


the act or practice of tolerating
freedom to hold religious opinions that differ from the established or prescribed religion of a country
Derived Forms
tolerationism, noun
tolerationist, noun
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 toleration

1510s, "permission granted by authority, license," from Middle French tolération (15c.), from Latin tolerationem (nominative toleratio) "a bearing, supporting, enduring," noun of action from past participle stem of tolerare "to tolerate, literally "to bear" (see extol). Meaning "forbearance, sufferance" is from 1580s. Religious sense is from Act of Toleration, statute granting freedom of religious worship (with conditions) to dissenting Protestants in England, 1689.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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