[ af-ek-tey-shuhn ]
See synonyms for affectation on
  1. an effort to appear to have a quality not really or fully possessed; the pretense of actual possession: an affectation of interest in art; affectation of great wealth.

  2. conspicuous artificiality of manner or appearance; effort to attract notice by pretense, assumption, or any assumed peculiarity.

  1. a trait, action, or expression characterized by such artificiality: a man of a thousand affectations.

  2. Obsolete.

    • strenuous pursuit, desire, or aspiration.

    • affection; fondness: his affectation of literature.

Origin of affectation

First recorded in 1540–50; from Latin affectātiōn- (stem of affectātiō ) “a striving after,” equivalent to affectāt(us), past participle of affectāre “to strive after, feign” + -iōn- a suffix forming nouns; see affect2, -ate1,-ion

Other words for affectation

Opposites for affectation

Other words from affectation

  • non·af·fec·ta·tion, noun

Words that may be confused with affectation

Words Nearby affectation Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use affectation in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for affectation


/ (ˌæfɛkˈteɪʃən) /

  1. an assumed manner of speech, dress, or behaviour, esp one that is intended to impress others

  2. (often foll by of) deliberate pretence or false display: affectation of nobility

Origin of affectation

C16: from Latin affectātiōn- an aiming at, striving after, from affectāre; see affect 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