[ av-uh-key-shuhn ]
See synonyms for avocation on Thesaurus.com
  1. something a person does in addition to a principal occupation, especially for pleasure; hobby: Our doctor's avocation is painting.

  2. a person's regular occupation, calling, or vocation.

  1. Archaic. diversion or distraction.

Origin of avocation

First recorded in 1520–30; from Latin āvocātiōn- (stem of āvocātiō ) “a calling away”; see a-4, vocation

Other words from avocation

  • av·o·ca·tion·al, adjective
  • av·o·ca·tion·al·ly, adverb

Words that may be confused with avocation

Words Nearby avocation

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use avocation in a sentence

  • He realized that, for the first time in his life, he had taken up a sound and serious avocation.

  • The incongruity of Finucane's avocation, and his manners and appearance, amused his new friend Pen.

    A History of Pendennis, Volume 1 | William Makepeace Thackeray
  • Also, Jim discovered that Tuck was an old Yale man and that his avocation in life seemed to be tennis.

    Still Jim | Honor Willsie Morrow
  • The salutary influence which good example propagates, we find stamped on every avocation in life.

    Gathering Jewels | James Knowles and Matilda Darroch Knowles
  • He finally made a home at Teddington, in Middlesex, and devoted himself to the avocation of fruit-growing.

    Essays on Modern Novelists | William Lyon Phelps

British Dictionary definitions for avocation


/ (ˌævəˈkeɪʃən) /

  1. formal a minor occupation undertaken as a diversion

  2. not standard a person's regular job or vocation

Origin of 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