Definition of heritage in English:



  • 1Property that is or may be inherited; an inheritance.

    ‘they had stolen his grandfather's heritage’
    • ‘For the pluralistic West, universal access to heritage is an individual right.’
    • ‘Brothers, sisters and their children will pay a tax of 0.7 per cent of a heritage portion of over 250,000 leva worth.’
    inheritance, birthright, patrimony
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    1. 1.1 Valued objects and qualities such as historic buildings and cultural traditions that have been passed down from previous generations.
      ‘Europe's varied cultural heritage’
      mass noun ‘the estuary has a sense of history and heritage’
      • ‘What binds the group together is a common Jewish heritage as passed down from generation to generation.’
      • ‘Steam is an award-winning, much loved attraction that celebrates our railway heritage.’
      • ‘The Pondicherry Government intends conserving the architectural heritage of the town within the boulevard area.’
      • ‘In pre-literate societies, poetry was the means by which a community's cultural heritage was passed from one generation to the next.’
      • ‘The ruins evoke the nation's Indian past and legitimizes both Peru's historical heritage and cultural tradition.’
      • ‘Organizations that promote traditional Chinese music have preserved the rich musical heritage of many national minorities.’
      • ‘It states that those values are the heritage of future generations.’
      • ‘And jazz lovers are no doubt worrying about what the devastation could mean for the city's musical heritage.’
      • ‘Together, we must help each other preserve the national heritage for future generations.’
      • ‘Investors interested in Bulgaria can see offers in mountain and seaside resorts, as well as towns with a rich cultural and historical heritage.’
      • ‘History is necessary to instil patriotism and pride in the younger generation about the cultural heritage, values systems and religions, she says.’
      • ‘Still, much of the nation's heritage has been destroyed in the name of modernization.’
      • ‘How can we protect our diverse natural heritage whilst at the same time developing the economy?’
      • ‘Celebrate your African heritage by taking part in today's indigenous games extravaganza, starting at 10 am.’
      • ‘There is a long tradition of concern for history and cultural heritage in Iraq.’
      • ‘A traditional role of universities has been to pass on the intellectual heritage and culture of a country.’
      • ‘Many traditional dishes contain beans and corn, reflecting the Indian heritage of the country.’
      • ‘We are trying to save the visual heritage of these historic buildings and create a modern community centre inside.’
      • ‘But now, like so much of the nation's natural heritage, it is under threat.’
      • ‘In addition, this model helps non-Asian readers to understand and value the cultural heritage of others.’
      tradition, history, background, culture, customs, past
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    2. 1.2as modifier Denoting or relating to things of special architectural, historical, or natural value that are preserved for the nation.
      ‘a heritage centre’
      ‘60 miles of heritage coastline’
      • ‘The station has a large dock, at which the heritage steamship Lady Rose moors when bringing passengers and mail to Bamfield every other day.’
      • ‘The KMRT's red line was planned back in 1994, well before the sugar plant was declared a heritage site.’
      • ‘As the Executive has now called in the decision, it is their responsibility to stop this architectural and heritage vandalism.’
      • ‘The locomotives lead two express boxcars, a heritage baggage, a business class coach, café, three more coaches, and two or three express cars at the end.’
      • ‘It also sets the stage for the opportunities and dangers that helped to create the burgeoning scientific and conservation movements that relate to heritage animals.’
      • ‘Singapore as a city has set a fine example as to how one can use and restore architectural gems and heritage buildings that have done their time.’
      • ‘Part ambassador, part super-salesman, and part Grade 1 listed historical heritage item, the Lord Mayor is a richly bizarre human institution.’
      • ‘Last year, Australians placed Fraser at the top of the country's favorite heritage sites, and the island also placed high with readers of Conde Nast Traveler.’
      • ‘Costume as concept underlines the conscious choosing of a character's dress as part of Dash's preparing a heritage film, a period piece, if you will.’
      • ‘Hangover gone, we headed to the small fishing port of Peel for a trip to the House of Manannan, an award winning £6m heritage centre detailing Manx history.’
      • ‘The total value of this architectural heritage project is £60,000 and this work is being carried out by the Office of Public Works.’
      • ‘The heritage centre building is a former house of correction built in 1791, one of only two surviving examples in the country.’
      • ‘The building is of obvious heritage value, not just to Swindon but nationally, and should therefore be restored without a 10 storey greenhouse regardless of the cost.’
      • ‘The Irish government has tried to keep Bemis from plundering the remains, most effectively by passing a law that protects the Lusitania and the area around it as a heritage site.’
      • ‘Are heritage turkeys a fad or a long-term market?’
      • ‘Gan Xi's house and several others on the same street are now preserved as heritage buildings and house a folk arts museum.’
      • ‘Urban Splash acquired the building in December 2002 and since then they have worked extensively on plans in a bid to preserve the important heritage elements of the building.’
      • ‘The addition of heritage sites and the expansion of promotional activities involving them was a minor aspect of some major globalizing trends of the 1990s.’
      • ‘Experts recognize the tree as the biggest in Oregon; the Oregon Heritage Tree Committee designated it a heritage tree in April 1999.’
      • ‘The register lists nearly 1,500 of the nation's most vulnerable heritage assets - with a repair bill estimated at over £400m.’
      classic, ageless, timeless, enduring
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    3. 1.3as modifier Denoting a traditional brand or product regarded as emblematic of fine craftsmanship.
      ‘heritage brands have found a growing cachet among younger customers’
      • ‘The jacket image was created by award-winning design agency The Partners, who work with some of Britain's oldest heritage brands including Jaguar, Wedgwood, Harrods, the BBC and The National Gallery.’
      • ‘His commercial passion and specialist knowledge lies in reviving and growing heritage brands.’
      • ‘Today, decades old, high-quality, American heritage brands such as Woolrich jackets, Red Wing boots, Hamilton shirts and even Zippo lighters are prospering even as their flashy, Euro-sleek competitors are taping sale signs to the front windows.’
      • ‘Over the years, he has driven the expansion of this global marketer of personal care brands by acquiring and revitalising well known heritage brands including Lypsyl, Harmony and Yardley.’
      • ‘According to Asda, we're increasingly stocking up on what might politely be called "heritage brands" and leaving the newer stuff - wasabi paste, extra virgin olive oil and cinnamon sticks - mouldering on the shelves.’
      • ‘The London-based private investment firm specializes in reviving heritage brands.’
      • ‘Quarried stone is used mainly for the production of roof tiles and other heritage products rather than garden rockery stone or sand and gravel.’
      • ‘Aertex is one of the last classic British heritage brands to be rediscovered and given a fresh lick of love.’
      • ‘"There are heritage brands that will not be produced at Gargrave indefinitely and this gives us a real opportunity to develop innovative products that will give the Gargrave facility and our employees a long and prosperous future."’
      • ‘You can go from ballistic nylon, which is a commodity that everyone needs to have, to our heritage lines of tweed and belting leather.’
      • ‘The regeneration of heritage marques through injections of dynamic fashion talent was the big fashion story of the mid- and late-1990s.’
    4. 1.4as modifier Denoting a breed of livestock or poultry that was once traditional to an area but is no longer farmed in large numbers.
      ‘Cotswold sheep are considered a heritage breed in Canada’
    5. 1.5North American as modifier (of a plant variety) not hybridized with another; old-fashioned.
      ‘heritage roses’
      • ‘They are constructing around existing old-growth trees and heritage plants.’
      • ‘Our statistics also show that more than half of those heritage seeds were introduced by only 21 companies, so these gains are extremely fragile.’
      • ‘I've bought some turnip seeds (some rare heritage variety, natch…) and intend to grow turnips until they're coming out of my ears.’
      • ‘The heritage orchard has a variety of different breeds of pears and the community uses the pears for wine, jams and all sorts of yummy things.’
      • ‘The potatoes - doubtless La Ratte or Pink Fir - had the furry waxiness and real flavour you only get from the great heritage varieties that have been boiled in their skins.’
      • ‘For old garden roses, also known as heritage roses or antique roses, it's a little different.’
      • ‘The two specimens in the red pots at the front are Dwarf French Beans of the variety Scott's Bean, a heritage variety from the HDRA Heritage Seed Library.’
      • ‘Hear about heritage varieties of apples and then taste the different types.’
      • ‘The most reliable shrub roses for fragrance are the old and heritage roses such as those bred by David Austin.’
      • ‘Growing heritage vegetables to use in period recipes is also a gardening interest of Sue's.’
      • ‘They're both heritage varieties, so that's pretty good going I think although I haven't given up all hope of the other seeds sprouting.’
      • ‘It also has the largest collection of heritage apple varieties on mainland Australia.’
      • ‘The Botanic Gardens also have a significant heritage rose collection.’
      • ‘Some of those old heritage varieties can still be found in seed catalogs.’
      • ‘The logistics of buses and tour guides in each area is still being sorted out but the idea is rolling out with enthusiasts in each town planting heritage roses around tourism sites.’
      • ‘Most modern roses are budded, and have a bud union, while heritage roses, many shrub roses, and most miniature roses grow on their own roots and do not have a bud union.’
      • ‘Popular first earlies are Red Duke of York, a heritage variety with yellow flesh and a great flavour, and Epicure, which gives a good yield.’
  • 2archaic A special or individual possession; an allotted portion.

    ‘God's love remains your heritage’
    • ‘This is your heritage as a baptized Christian, and it is something the Father longs to do for you.’
  • 3archaic Christians, or the ancient Israelites, seen as God's chosen people.


Middle English: from Old French heritage, from heriter ‘inherit’ (see heritable).