[vey-kuh n-see]
See more synonyms for vacancy on
noun, plural va·can·cies.
  1. the state of being vacant; emptiness.
  2. a vacant, empty, or unoccupied place, as untenanted lodgings or offices: This building still has no vacancies.
  3. a gap; opening; breach.
  4. an unoccupied position or office: a vacancy on the Supreme Court.
  5. lack of thought or intelligence; vacuity: a look of utter vacancy.
  6. Crystallography. (in a crystal) an imperfection resulting from an unoccupied lattice position.Compare interstitial(def 3).
  7. Archaic. absence of activity; idleness.

Origin of vacancy

From the Medieval Latin word vacantia, dating back to 1570–80. See vacant, -ancy
Related formsnon·va·can·cy, noun, plural non·va·can·cies. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for vacancy

Contemporary Examples of vacancy

Historical Examples of vacancy

  • And—perhaps you'd better not say you are applying until we find out if there is a vacancy.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • We now up helm, and steered for a vacancy among the British vessels.

    Ned Myers

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • It hasn't got no employment for its mind, and is always in a state of vacancy.

  • Another of the many shapes in which it started up about him, out of vacancy.

  • Then, as for knowing there was a vacancy, that also was money.

British Dictionary definitions for vacancy


noun plural -cies
  1. the state or condition of being vacant or unoccupied; emptiness
  2. an unoccupied post or officewe have a vacancy in the accounts department
  3. an unoccupied room in a boarding house, hotel, etcput the "No Vacancies" sign in the window
  4. lack of thought or intelligent awareness; inanityan expression of vacancy on one's face
  5. physics a defect in a crystalline solid caused by the absence of an atom, ion, or molecule from its position in the crystal lattice
  6. obsolete idleness or a period spent in idleness
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 vacancy

c.1600, "state of being vacant," from Late Latin vacantia, from vacans (see vacant). Meaning "available room at a hotel" is recorded from 1953. Related: Vacancies.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper