[ dok-yuh-men-tey-shuh n, -muh n- ]
/ ˌdɒk yə mɛnˈteɪ ʃən, -mən- /


the use of documentary evidence.
a furnishing with documents, as to substantiate a claim or the data in a book or article.
Computers. manuals, listings, diagrams, and other hard- or soft-copy written and graphic materials that describe the use, operation, maintenance, or design of software or hardware: The documentation for the driver program is displayed on the screen.

Nearby words

  1. document reader,
  2. documental,
  3. documentalist,
  4. documentarian,
  5. documentary,
  6. docusoap,
  7. docutainment,
  8. dod,
  9. dodd,
  10. dodd, william

Origin of documentation

First recorded in 1745–55; document + -ation

Related formsdoc·u·men·ta·tion·al, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for documentation

British Dictionary definitions for documentation


/ (ˌdɒkjʊmɛnˈteɪʃən) /


the act of supplying with or using documents or references
the documents or references supplied
the furnishing and use of documentary evidence, as in a court of law
computing the written comments, graphical illustrations, flowcharts, manuals, etc, supplied with a program or software system
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 documentation



1754, "admonition," from Medieval Latin documentationem (nominative documentio) "admonition" (see document). Meaning "furnishing with documents or papers" is from 1884, probably from document. Meaning "collection of informational papers" is from 1927.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper