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[pas-pawrt, -pohrt, pahs-] /ˈpæs pɔrt, -poʊrt, ˈpɑs-/
an official document issued by the government of a country to one of its citizens and, varying from country to country, authorizing travel to foreign countries and authenticating the bearer's identity, citizenship, right to protection while abroad, and right to reenter his or her native country.
anything that ensures admission or acceptance:
A good education can be your passport to success.
any authorization to pass or go somewhere.
a document issued to a ship, especially to a neutral merchant ship in time of war, granting or requesting permission to proceed without molestation in certain waters.
a certificate intended to secure admission.
Origin of passport
1490-1500; earlier passeport < Middle French, equivalent to passe- (stem of passer to pass) + port port1
Related forms
passportless, adjective
Can be confused
passport, visa. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for passport
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In England, personal distinction is the only passport to the society of the great.

    Vivian Grey Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli
  • And you're my passport, because only Med Ships have members of your tribe aboard!

    Pariah Planet Murray Leinster
  • "A passport from without would do equally well," he announced.

    Scaramouche Rafael Sabatini
  • "Then let your passport be for four, my friend," madame begged him.

    Scaramouche Rafael Sabatini
  • This was a passport to the honor and respect of other Christian nations.

    A Short History of Spain Mary Platt Parmele
British Dictionary definitions for passport


an official document issued by a government, identifying an individual, granting him permission to travel abroad, and requesting the protection of other governments for him
a licence granted by a state to a foreigner, allowing the passage of his person or goods through the country
another word for sea letter (sense 1)
a quality, asset, etc, that gains a person admission or acceptance
Word Origin
C15: from French passeport, from passer to pass + port1
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 passport

c.1500, from Middle French passeport "authorization to pass through a port" to enter or leave a country (15c.), from passe, imperative of Old French passer "to pass" (see pass (v.)) + port "port" (see port (n.1)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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