possession

[ puh-zesh-uhn ]
/ pəˈzɛʃ ən /

noun

Origin of possession

1300–50; Middle English < Latin possessiōn- (stem of possessiō) occupancy, act of occupying, equivalent to possess(us), past participle of possidēre to have in one's control, occupy (and, in active sense, past participle of posīdere to seize upon) (*pots-, akin to posse to be able + -sidēre, combining form of sedēre to sit1; cf. host1) + -iōn- -ion
Related formsnon·pos·ses·sion, noun

Synonym study

1, 3. See custody.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for possession

British Dictionary definitions for possession

possession

/ (pəˈzɛʃən) /

noun

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 possession

possession


n.

mid-14c., "act or fact of possessing, a taking possession, occupation," also "thing possessed, that which is possessed," from Old French possession "fact of having and holding; what is possessed;" also "demonic possession," and directly from Latin possessionem (nominative possessio), noun of action from past participle stem of possidere "to possess" (see possess). Legal property sense is earliest; demonic sense first recorded 1580s. Phrase possession is nine (or eleven) points of the law is out of a supposed 10 (or 12). With eleven from 1640s; with nine from 1690s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper