[ awk-shuhn ]
See synonyms for: auctionauctionedauctioning on

  1. Also called public sale. a publicly held sale at which property or goods are sold to the highest bidder.

  2. Cards.

    • (in bridge or certain other games) the competitive bidding to fix a contract that a player or players undertake to fulfill.

verb (used with object)
  1. to sell by auction (often followed by off): He auctioned off his furniture.

Origin of auction

1585–95; <Latin auctiōn- (stem of auctiō) an increase, especially in the bidding at a sale, equivalent to auct(us) increased, past participle of augēre (aug- increase + -tus past participle suffix) + -iōn--ion

Other words from auction

  • auc·tion·a·ble, adjective
  • auc·tion·ar·y, adjective
  • pro·auc·tion, adjective
  • un·auc·tioned, adjective

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

How to use auction in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for auction


/ (ˈɔːkʃən) /

  1. a public sale of goods or property, esp one in which prospective purchasers bid against each other until the highest price is reached: Compare Dutch auction

  2. the competitive calls made in bridge and other games before play begins, undertaking to win a given number of tricks if a certain suit is trumps

  1. (tr often foll by off) to sell by auction

Origin of auction

C16: from Latin auctiō an increasing, from augēre to increase

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