[ av-uh-key-shuh n ]
/ ˌæv əˈkeɪ ʃən /


something a person does in addition to a principal occupation, especially for pleasure; hobby: Our doctor's avocation is painting.
a person's regular occupation, calling, or vocation.
Archaic. diversion or distraction.

Nearby words

  1. avm,
  2. avn,
  3. avn.,
  4. avo,
  5. avocado,
  6. avocet,
  7. avodire,
  8. avogadro,
  9. avogadro's constant,
  10. avogadro's law

Origin of avocation

1520–30; < Latin āvocātiōn- (stem of āvocātiō) a calling away. See a-4, vocation

Related formsav·o·ca·tion·al, adjectiveav·o·ca·tion·al·ly, adverb

Can be confusedavocation vocationavocation evocation

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for avocation

British Dictionary definitions for avocation


/ (ˌævəˈkeɪʃən) /


formal a minor occupation undertaken as a diversion
not standard a person's regular job or vocation

Word Origin for avocation

C17: from Latin āvocātiō a calling away, diversion from, from āvocāre to distract, from vocāre to call

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

Word Origin and History for avocation



1520s, "a calling away from one's occupation," from Latin avocationem (nominative avocatio) "a calling away, distraction, diversion," noun of action from past participle stem of avocare, from ab- "off, away from" (see ab-) + vocare "to call" (see voice (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper