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[suhk-shuh n] /ˈsʌk ʃən/
the act, process, or condition of sucking.
the force that, by a pressure differential, attracts a substance or object to the region of lower pressure.
the act or process of producing such a force.
verb (used with object)
to draw out or remove by aspiration.
Origin of suction
1605-15; < Late Latin sūctiōn- (stem of sūctiō) a sucking, equivalent to Latin sūct(us) (past participle of sūgere to suck) + -iōn- -ion
Related forms
suctional, adjective
nonsuction, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for suction
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • A series of suction cups or sucking pads were at the end of each tentacle.

    Martians Never Die Lucius Daniel
  • Even the slain deer was already beginning to yield to the suction from beneath.

    The Fiery Totem Argyll Saxby
  • What must have been holding the suction cap against the inside of the jar?

    Common Science Carleton W. Washburne
  • The water may be drawn out by means of suction through a reed.

  • I could see a respirator off to my right, and a suction octopus near it.

    Attrition Jim Wannamaker
  • Do you know the suction of clay—the weight of adhering clay to a shovel?

    Child and Country Will Levington Comfort
  • A mullet of Guiana, found in turbid waters, where it lives by suction.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • Then it occurred to Cheenbuk to apply the power of suction instead of inhalation.

    The Walrus Hunters R.M. Ballantyne
  • Soames noted a hollow in each cheek, made as it were by suction.

    The Forsyte Saga, Complete John Galsworthy
British Dictionary definitions for suction


the act or process of sucking
the force or condition produced by a pressure difference, as the force holding a suction cap onto a surface
the act or process of producing such a force or condition
Derived Forms
suctional, adjective
Word Origin
C17: from Late Latin suctiō a sucking, from Latin sūgere to suck
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 suction

1620s, from Late Latin suctionem (nominative suctio), noun of action from past participle stem of Latin sugere "to suck" (see suck).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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suction in Science
  1. A force acting on a fluid caused by difference in pressure between two regions, tending to make the fluid flow from the region of higher pressure to the region of lower pressure.

  2. The act of reducing pressure to create such a force, as by the use of a pump or fan.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Slang definitions & phrases for suction



Influence; drag, pull (1940s+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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