[kuh-myoo-ni-key-shuh n]
See more synonyms for communication on
  1. the act or process of communicating; fact of being communicated.
  2. the imparting or interchange of thoughts, opinions, or information by speech, writing, or signs.
  3. something imparted, interchanged, or transmitted.
  4. a document or message imparting news, views, information, etc.
  5. passage, or an opportunity or means of passage, between places.
  6. communications,
    1. means of sending messages, orders, etc., including telephone, telegraph, radio, and television.
    2. routes and transportation for moving troops and supplies from a base to an area of operations.
  7. Biology.
    1. activity by one organism that changes or has the potential to change the behavior of other organisms.
    2. transfer of information from one cell or molecule to another, as by chemical or electrical signals.

Origin of communication

1375–1425; Middle English communicacioun < Middle French < Latin commūnicātiōn- (stem of commūnicātiō), equivalent to commūnicāt(us) (see communicate) + -iōn- -ion
Related formscom·mu·ni·ca·tion·al, adjectivenon·com·mu·ni·ca·tion, nouno·ver·com·mu·ni·ca·tion, nounpre·com·mu·ni·ca·tion, nounself-com·mu·ni·ca·tion, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for communication

Contemporary Examples of communication

Historical Examples of communication

  • Was his father still alive, or was this letter a communication from the dead?

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • Ambrose was the only person who ever received any communication from Giles Headley.

    The Armourer's Prentices

    Charlotte M. Yonge

  • Polar ice would have been thawed by this reopening of communication.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • He did apply, and at the end of a month, no answer had been returned to his communication.

  • And yet I know that you will not love my brother the better for my communication.

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

British Dictionary definitions for communication


  1. the act or an instance of communicating; the imparting or exchange of information, ideas, or feelings
  2. something communicated, such as a message, letter, or telephone call
    1. (usually plural; sometimes functioning as singular)the study of ways in which human beings communicate, including speech, gesture, telecommunication systems, publishing and broadcasting media, etc
    2. (as modifier)communication theory
  3. a connecting route, passage, or link
  4. (plural) military the system of routes and facilities by which forces, supplies, etc, are moved up to or within an area of operations
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 communication

late 14c., from Old French comunicacion (14c., Modern French communication), from Latin communicationem (nominative communicatio), noun of action from past participle stem of communicare "to share, divide out; communicate, impart, inform; join, unite, participate in," literally "to make common," from communis (see common (adj.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

communication in Medicine


  1. The exchange of thoughts, messages, or information, as by speech, signals, writing, or behavior.
  2. An opening or a connecting passage between two structures.
  3. A joining or connecting of solid fibrous structures, such as tendons and nerves.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.