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[ri-presh-uh n] /rɪˈprɛʃ ən/
the act of repressing; state of being repressed.
Psychoanalysis. the rejection from consciousness of painful or disagreeable ideas, memories, feelings, or impulses.
Origin of repression
1325-75; Middle English repressioun < Medieval Latin repressiōn- (stem of repressiō), Late Latin: suppression. See repress, -ion
Related forms
nonrepression, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for repression
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He beat them down again to repression; but he never afterwards knew how he did it.

    The Channings Mrs. Henry Wood
  • Pale, stern, composed, he stood an iron figure of repression.

    Sir Henry Morgan, Buccaneer Cyrus Townsend Brady
  • Now, there again, I think our friend overdoes the repression business.

    Love and Lucy

    Maurice Henry Hewlett
  • The first awakening is the time for the play of energy, not its repression.

    My Reminiscences Rabindranath Tagore
  • I cannot stand the repression—suppression—whatever you like to call it.

    A Houseful of Girls Sarah Tytler
British Dictionary definitions for repression


the act or process of repressing or the condition of being repressed
(psychoanal) the subconscious rejection of thoughts and impulses that conflict with conventional standards of conduct See suppression (sense 2)
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 repression

late 14c., noun of action from repress (v.), or else from Medieval Latin repressionem (nominative repressio), noun of action from past participle stem of Latin reprimere. Psychological sense is from 1908; biochemical sense is from 1957.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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repression in Medicine

repression re·pres·sion (rĭ-prěsh'ən)

  1. The act of repressing or the state of being repressed.

  2. The unconscious exclusion of painful impulses, desires, or fears from the conscious mind.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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