the state or fact of being an owner.
legal right of possession; proprietorship.

Origin of ownership

First recorded in 1575–85; owner + -ship
Related formsin·ter·own·er·ship, nounself-own·er·ship, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ownership

Contemporary Examples of ownership

Historical Examples of ownership

  • To effect a change of ownership with the candid concomitance of a brass band.

  • But Alice was no claim-jumper—so long as the notice of ownership was plainly posted.

    Alice Adams

    Booth Tarkington

  • Still, I guess the ownership of the canoe doesn't amount to much now.

  • I don't intend him to know anything at all about my ownership now.

  • The sense of ownership has been the seed-plot of our moral code.

    The Truth About Woman

    C. Gasquoine Hartley

British Dictionary definitions for ownership



the state or fact of being an owner
legal right of possession; proprietorship
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 ownership

1580s, from owner + -ship. Ownership society (2003) was popularized by U.S. president George W. Bush.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper