[seen-yawr-i-tee, -yor-]
See more synonyms for seniority on
noun, plural sen·ior·i·ties for 2.
  1. the state of being senior; priority of birth; superior age.
  2. priority, precedence, or status obtained as the result of a person's length of service, as in a profession, trade, company, or union: First choice of vacation time will be given to employees with seniority.

Origin of seniority

1400–50; late Middle English < Medieval Latin seniōritās, equivalent to Latin senior senior + -itās -ity Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for seniority

Contemporary Examples of seniority

Historical Examples of seniority

  • They rose and left silently in the order of their seniority.

    The Adventurer

    Cyril M. Kornbluth

  • Deals in order of seniority with two of the hills on which Prague stands.

    From a Terrace in Prague

    Lieut.-Col. B. Granville Baker

  • "He's not as susceptible as he looks," Rose pronounced from her vantage-point of seniority.


    Alice Hegan Rice

  • Seniority on the father's side gives excess of male offspring.

    The Physical Life of Woman:

    Dr. George H Napheys

  • His age and seniority of settlement, also entitled him to it.

British Dictionary definitions for seniority


noun plural -ties
  1. the state of being senior
  2. precedence in rank, etc, due to senior status
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 seniority

"priority on office or service," mid-15c., from Medieval Latin senioritas, from Latin senior (see senior (adj.)). Meaning "state or quality of being senior" is from 1530s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

seniority in Culture


Length of service on a job. Seniority may be considered in making decisions about wages, layoffs, and other working conditions.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.