From Middle English nacioun, nacion, from Old French nacion, from Latin nātiōnem, accusative of nātiō (“nation”). Displaced native Old English þēod.
nation (plural nations)
- A historically constituted, stable community of people, formed based on a common language, territory, economic life, ethnicity and/or psychological make-up manifested in a common culture.
- The Roma are a nation without a country.
- 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), London: […] Robert Barker, […], →OCLC, Psalms 22:27:
- All the ends of the woꝛld ſhall remember, and turne vnto the Lord: and all the kinreds of the nations ſhall woꝛſhip befoꝛe thee.
- (international law) A sovereign state.
- 2013 June 7, David Simpson, “Fantasy of navigation”, in The Guardian Weekly, volume 188, number 26, page 36:
- It is tempting to speculate about the incentives or compulsions that might explain why anyone would take to the skies in [the] basket [of a balloon]: […] perhaps to muse on the irrelevance of the borders that separate nation states and keep people from understanding their shared environment.
- Though legally single nations, many states comprise several distinct cultural or ethnic groups.
- (chiefly historical) An association of students based on its members' birthplace or ethnicity.
- Synonym: student nation
- Once widespread across Europe in medieval times, nations are now largely restricted to the ancient universities of Sweden and Finland.
- (obsolete) A great number; a great deal.
- 1762, Laurence Sterne, The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman, volume V, new edition, Altenburgh: G. E. Richter, published 1772, page 57:
- […] and what a nation of herbs he had procured to mollify her humours, &c. &c. […]
- (British) Following the establishment of the Scottish and Welsh parliaments, England, Scotland and Wales are normally considered distinct nations. Application of the term nation to the United Kingdom as a whole is deprecated in most style guides, including the BBC, most newspapers and in UK Government publications. Northern Ireland, being of less clear legal status, generally remains a province.
Terms derived from nation
Terms etymologically related to nation
community of people
association of students
Probably short for damnation.
- (rare, dialectal) Extremely, very.
- 1884 December 10, Mark Twain [pseudonym; Samuel Langhorne Clemens], chapter XIX, in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: (Tom Sawyer’s Comrade) […], London: Chatto & Windus, […], →OCLC, page 186:
- “Looky here, Bilgewater,” he says, “I’m nation sorry for you, but you ain’t the only person that’s had troubles like that.”
- “Notable and Quotable”, in Merriam Webster Online Newsletter, November 2005, archived from the original on 2006-03-14.
From Latin nātiō (“birth, people”), derived from the verb nāscor (“to be born”).
nation c (singular definite nationen, plural indefinite nationer)
- a nation, a people with a common identity, united in history, culture or language
- a nation, a country that is a politically independent unity
Declension of nation
- “nation” in Den Danske Ordbog
From Middle French nation, from Old French nacion, borrowed from Latin nātiōnem.
nation f (plural nations)
- “nation”, in Trésor de la langue française informatisé [Digitized Treasury of the French Language], 2012.
From Old French nacion.
nation f (plural nations)
- French: nation
- a nation, a nationality, a people
- a nation, a country, a state
- a union or fraternity of students from the same province
|Declension of nation|