Definition of occasion noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//əˈkeɪʒn//
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈkeɪʒn//
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  1. 1  [countable] a particular time when something happens on this/that occasion I've met him on several occasions. I can remember very few occasions when he had to cancel because of ill health. They have been seen together on two separate occasions. On one occasion, she called me in the middle of the night. He used the occasion to announce further tax cuts.
  2. 2  [countable] a special event, ceremony or celebration a great/memorable/happy occasion Turn every meal into a special occasion. They marked the occasion (= celebrated it) with an open-air concert. Their wedding turned out to be quite an occasion. He was presented with the watch on the occasion of his retirement. Wordfinderanniversary, birthday, celebrate, commemorate, festivity, jubilee, occasion, parade, party, reception
  3. 3  [singular] occasion (for something/doing something) a suitable time for something It should have been an occasion for rejoicing, but she could not feel any real joy. I’ll speak to him about it if the occasion arises(= if I get a chance).
  4. 4[uncountable, singular] (formal) a reason or cause occasion (to do something) I've had no occasion to visit him recently. She doesn’t have much occasion to speak French in her new job. occasion (of/for something) Her death was the occasion of mass riots. I'm willing to go to court over this if the occasion arises (= if it becomes necessary).
  5. Word Originlate Middle English: from Latin occasio(n-) ‘juncture, reason’, from occidere ‘go down, set’, from ob- ‘towards’ + cadere ‘to fall’.Extra examples His death became an occasion for widespread discussion of his character. I bought the camera last year, but never had the occasion to use it. I do sometimes dance if the occasion calls for it. I have stayed there on a number of occasions. I only wear my silk dress on special occasions. I want to use this occasion to thank you all for your hard work. I’ll speak to him if the occasion arises. It should have been an occasion for rejoicing. It was the first of many such occasions. Last year we had occasion to visit relatives in Cornwall. Medals are usually worn only on ceremonial occasions. On one occasion he even called me in the middle of the night. On the day of the wedding there was a real sense of occasion. On this occasion, as it happens, the engine started immediately. On this particular occasion, Joe wasn’t there. The Queen’s coach is only used for state occasions. The choir rose to the occasion and sang beautifully. The police were called out on 24 separate occasions. These workshops provide an occasion for talking about art. They came to visit us on the odd occasion, but only when they had nothing better to do. We sell cards and notepaper for all occasions. a party to mark the occasion of their daughter’s graduation the occasion of his 50th birthday I will overlook your lateness, on this occasion. I’ve met him on several occasions. It was certainly a memorable occasion! They have been seen together on two separate occasions. They marked the occasion with an open-air concert. Turn every meal into a special occasion.Idioms  sometimes but not often He has been known on occasion to lose his temper. a feeling or understanding that an event is important or special Candles on the table gave the evening a sense of occasion.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: occasion

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