Definition of profession in English:

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Pronunciation: /prəˈfɛʃ(ə)n/


1A paid occupation, especially one that involves prolonged training and a formal qualification: his chosen profession of teaching a barrister by profession
More example sentences
  • Meanwhile US hacks have convinced themselves that they're involved in a profession rather than a craft.
  • By profession he was a poet, and he'd appeared in Galway several times before - at poetry readings, unaccompanied by a band.
  • By profession I am a well-known book illustrator and artist.
career, occupation, calling, vocation, line of work, line of employment, line, métier;
job, day job, position;
Scottish  way
informal racket
archaic employ
1.1 [treated as singular or plural] A body of people engaged in a particular profession: the legal profession has become increasingly business-conscious
More example sentences
  • The Law Society of Alberta, the regulatory body for the legal profession, says no complaints have been filed as of yet against anyone.
  • The legal profession's peak body, the Law Council, called on judges to boycott the new regime.
  • That is a very proper process, as essentially this is the constitution of the legal profession in our nation.
2An open but often false claim: his profession of delight rang hollow
More example sentences
  • Nations have frequently tired of freedom and yielded themselves to tyrants, but not because of guileless trust in false professions.
  • In his professions, he claimed the Blair Witch had placed a hex on him, forcing him to commit the murders.
  • The great point of that book was to deal with this problem of a false profession.
acknowledgement, admission, confession
3A declaration of belief in a religion: [mass noun]: they were baptized on profession of faith
More example sentences
  • Generally, chaplains of any faith can gain access to local religious leaders since religion and a profession of faith are the common bonds.
  • Having ‘God’ in it divides us and attempts to link patriotism to public professions of religious belief.
  • Living ‘by faith in’ suggests that faith is a profession to be asserted, a willed thing.
3.1The declaration or vows made on entering a religious order.
Example sentences
  • Ironically, religious profession and the renuncia could create an opportunity for women to administer property autonomously.
3.2 [mass noun] The ceremony or fact of being professed in a religious order: after profession she taught in Maidenhead
More example sentences
  • Also celebrating her 50th Anniversary of religious profession, Sister Edna O'Connor, a native of Irishtown.
  • At solemn profession, I placed my hands in those of my prioress, professing to live my vows usque ad mortem, until death.


the oldest profession

humorous The practice of working as a prostitute.
Example sentences
  • Yes, the oldest profession (even when it's called ‘escort’) is, ‘Society’ wise, not the most respected.
  • Even though love-at-work is as old as the world's oldest profession, the days of women being suspected of sleeping their way to the middle are not over.
  • It feels that the crackdown will drive prostitution and brothels even further underground, making the oldest profession even more dangerous for both the women and their punters.


Middle English (denoting the vow made on entering a religious order): via Old French from Latin professio(n-), from profiteri 'declare publicly' (see profess). sense 1 derives from the notion of an occupation that one ‘professes’ to be skilled in.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: pro|fes¦sion

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