Definition of avocation in English:



  • A hobby or minor occupation.

    ‘they are basically doctors, and negotiators by avocation’
    • ‘Now, you've studied particularly the writings, the love letters of people who actually write as an avocation.’
    • ‘That natural pastime became a lifelong avocation that has helped recognize and protect many notable trees in his borne county.’
    • ‘The bile directed at us in the column shows a desire to hurt me personally and to make my employer suffer for my avocation.’
    • ‘But the trouble with gardening, as the American poet Phyllis McGinley once pointed out, is that ‘it does not remain an avocation, it becomes an obsession’.’
    • ‘Food and interior design have always been avocations of mine.’
    • ‘But, this youngster surely has an avocation that is seriously different - producing music with the vocal chords.’
    • ‘Some people have several vocations and avocations; some have worked in numerous industries; and some are interested in moving to a different profession.’
    • ‘And maybe you'll have some energy left over to indulge your avocation until it can become your vocation.’
    • ‘And the specter of student loans spurred graduates to take lucrative jobs rather than pursue avocations.’
    • ‘In 1931, Heath retired from engineering research and patent law to devote himself to his avocation of horticulture and to research into the foundations of the natural and social sciences.’
    • ‘More than a few antiques dealers start out as indefatigable collectors who make the decision to turn their avocation into a vocation.’
    • ‘Even an avocation demands strenuous devotion and fortitude.’
    • ‘Enjoying politics as an avocation is different from caring about the actual political issues.’
    • ‘Obvious identification with the parent who died, e.g., wearing their clothes, becoming interested in their vocations and avocations was most frequent in this age group.’
    • ‘So I thought by being a lawyer that I could combine my vocation with my avocations and be part of the various worlds I love.’
    • ‘From e-mail to Weblogs, the online world opens up avenues to cozy up to experts, make a mark in your avocation or profession, and be viewed, in your own right, as someone who matters.’
    • ‘The first concerns individuals engaged in occupations or avocations in which chasing the spotlight and thriving on the adulation of others are not only appropriate and adaptive but a sine qua non for success.’
    • ‘Although birdwatchers may pursue their avocation for as long as they wish during the year, there comes a time when the activity gets stepped up.’
    • ‘Even then, farming for them was a hobby, an avocation, a link to a way of life that was slipping away.’
    • ‘Not bad for an incidental photographer who took up photography mostly as a necessity rather than an avocation!’
    activity, leisure activity, leisure pursuit, leisure interest, hobby, pastime, diversion, recreation, relaxation, divertissement, sideline, entertainment, amusement, sport, game
    View synonyms


Mid 17th century: from Latin avocatio(n-), from avocare ‘call away’, from ab- ‘from’ + vocare ‘to call’.