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  1. the act of receiving or the state of being received.
  2. a manner of being received: The book met with a favorable reception.
  3. a function or occasion when persons are formally received: a wedding reception.
  4. the quality or fidelity attained in receiving radio or television broadcasts under given circumstances.

Origin of reception

1350–1400; Middle English recepcion < Latin receptiōn- (stem of receptiō), equivalent to recept(us) (past participle of recipere to receive) + -iōn- -ion
Related formsnon·re·cep·tion, noun

Synonyms for reception

See more synonyms for on Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for reception


  1. the act of receiving or state of being received
  2. the manner in which something, such as a guest or a new idea, is receiveda cold reception
  3. a formal party for guests, such as one after a wedding
  4. an area in an office, hotel, etc, where visitors or guests are received and appointments or reservations dealt with
  5. short for reception room
  6. the quality or fidelity of a received radio or television broadcastthe reception was poor
  7. British
    1. the first class in an infant school
    2. a class in a school designed to receive new immigrants, esp those whose knowledge of English is poor
    3. (as modifier)a reception teacher

Word Origin for reception

C14: from Latin receptiō a receiving, from recipere to receive
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 reception

late 14c., in astrology, "effect of two planets on each other;" sense of "act of receiving" is recorded from late 15c., from Latin receptionem (nominative receptio) "a receiving," noun of action from past participle stem of recipere (see receive). Sense of "ceremonial gathering" is 1882, from French.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper