Definition of quotation in English:



  • 1A group of words taken from a text or speech and repeated by someone other than the original author or speaker.

    ‘a quotation from Mark Twain’
    • ‘The author uses extensive quotations from memoirs and minutes so that the reader can see the decision-making process in the raw.’
    • ‘Most of her wall decorations are paintings and drawings she's done herself, often with quotations from authors or inspirational thoughts.’
    • ‘It traces the usage of words through 2.5 million quotations from a wide range of international English language sources, from classic literature and specialist periodicals to film scripts and cookery books.’
    • ‘Age and ailments do not mar the freedom fighter's energy levels, he answers all his letters and his phone calls, files all his correspondence and can fish out exact quotations from Gandhiji's speeches in moments.’
    • ‘Yet a professor I'm working with insists on having some 55-word quotations be set as normal quotes, and some 45-word quotations be set as block quotes.’
    • ‘It illustrated the use of words with appropriate quotations.’
    • ‘Walls covered with quotations and images of inspiration and persecution remind visitors why they have come.’
    • ‘Patriotic speeches and publications during the period of the struggle for independence were often infused with Biblical motifs and quotations.’
    • ‘This is a beautifully laid out book, with the prose interspersed with short poems, quotations, poignant photographs, and practical checklists.’
    • ‘Out of context, a quotation from any text is meaningless.’
    • ‘Such accounts call for perusal in depth; so I'll end with a few short quotations that at least give the flavour of this delightful, and genuinely educative, book.’
    • ‘However, by getting both the quotation and its author wrong, he merely exposed his own lack of education.’
    • ‘Though block quotations are always given in modem English as well as the original Tudor form, shorter quotations are only in the original.’
    • ‘There are many shorter poems and quotations from history books scattered throughout.’
    • ‘The text is broken up by just four illustrations, one musical example and surprisingly few quotations.’
    • ‘The objects, images, and quotations on display represent the experiences and judgements of people who lived under and rebelled against British rule as well as those who extended and enforced it.’
    • ‘Then, too, exact quotations from speeches sometimes look decidedly strange in print.’
    • ‘Regrettably, its evident scholarship has been combined with a heavy academic style, and the number of quotations from other authors becomes something of a distraction.’
    • ‘Each of the 10 chapters begins with a series of short quotations.’
    • ‘It is simply not possible to lift a convenient quotation from the text and expect it to illuminate a modern debate about rights theory without understanding the context in which Marx wrote.’
    citation, quote, reference, mention, allusion, excerpt, extract, selection, passage, line, cutting, clip, clipping, snippet, reading, section, piece, part, fragment, portion, paragraph, verse, stanza, canto, sentence, phrase
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A short musical passage or visual image taken from one piece of music or work of art and used in another.
      ‘a quotation from Bartók's Fourth String Quartet’
      • ‘I noticed, however, for the first time that Vaughan Williams provides a partial quotation of the Dies Ire.’
      • ‘They are visual quotations taken from the wooden posts depicting stories of the Old and New Testament that line the front and sides of the church, respectively.’
      • ‘Why is much contemporary Western tonal music so droneful, so full of ancient quotations or allusions?’
      • ‘At length, the soloist and the orchestra meet on the same spiritual plane, a process aided by the quotation of the plainsong Adoro te devote.’
      • ‘One also hears quotations of the chorale ‘Aus tiefer Not,’ perhaps a tip of the hat to Bach.’
      • ‘Although there are no musical quotations, the description and analysis of some of the works given are enough.’
      • ‘The score contains a quotation from Busoni's Sonatina Seconda.’
      • ‘The piece abounds in quotations from Balanchine's leotard ballets, as the master's abstract works are called because of their stark costuming.’
      • ‘There is a dialogue of sorts between many of the works, in the form of visual quotations, influences or direct connections between works of art - artistic thoughts that are like links in a chain.’
      • ‘There is another rich, full life being lived by him that has nothing to do with dark screening rooms and old movie marathons, homages, or visual quotations.’
      • ‘His music abounds in hidden quotations and secret subtexts.’
      • ‘It crams in numerological and musical symbolism, and includes quotations from Wagner's Tristan und Isolde and Zemlinsky's Lyric Symphony.’
      • ‘In what ways are devotional images quotations?’
    2. 1.2mass noun The action of quoting from a text, speech, piece of music, or work of art.
      ‘a great argument with much quotation of Darwin’
      • ‘There's a solemnly ungrammatical but sincere and oddly moving description of Baji Rout's role in the freedom movement that bears quotation.’
      • ‘That decision is so well known that it is usually cited without any quotation from the speeches.’
      • ‘My one criticism would be that it seems overly reliant on lots of quotation from news pieces.’
      • ‘This strategy does not just incorporate the parody or direct quotation of prior texts, but uses everyday objects as the basis of its allegorical structure.’
      • ‘He provides copious quotation from the novels/autobiographies and the filmscripts and football reports, as well as from surviving acquaintances of the author.’
      • ‘Ted Hughes's reply, which opens by describing our dispute as a ‘corrosive misunderstanding’, is worth extensive quotation.’
      • ‘Because of that, it isn't actually amenable to quotation.’
  • 2A formal statement setting out the estimated cost for a particular job or service.

    ‘ensure you receive a written quotation covering all aspects of the job’
    • ‘Additionally, always pin them down to a proper quotation for their service.’
    • ‘The solicitor should make clear at the outset if an estimate, quotation or other indication of cost is not intended to be fixed.’
    • ‘When the existing policy expired in March the villagers were told it would not be renewed and were offered a quotation by another company of £1,000.’
    • ‘Seek a detailed quotation in writing and try to use a firm with recommendations for reliability and good workmanship - a trade association might get help.’
    • ‘The client usually receives a quotation with projections when buying a policy.’
    • ‘The aim of this study is to assess the risks of the project, so that a formal quotation can be made.’
    • ‘The spokeswoman also suggested that online users call a customer service land line if they are not happy with the onscreen quotations they are receiving.’
    • ‘The balustrade has been inspected by the appropriate council departments and an approved contractor who will now provide a quotation and method statement for the reinstatement of the works.’
    • ‘When choosing a garage for repairs, David advises that you select a familiar and reputable company, and wherever possible get a firm quotation or written estimate for repairs.’
    • ‘One should obtain quotations from all the insurers to be able to compare costs and benefits.’
    • ‘The supplier then faxes back a quotation for the total cost of the materials in the quantities desired delivered to the actual job site.’
    • ‘Cost accountants would be involved in helping to establish price quotations based upon the subcontractor's actual cost experience.’
    • ‘Ask the funeral director for a written quotation detailing all of these fees.’
    • ‘Removal costs vary widely and quotations depend on the volume of belongings to be moved.’
    • ‘Insurance companies can no longer refuse quotations because of a person's age alone.’
    • ‘Once we have this information we will prepare a quotation with the aim of trying to ensure your aims and expectations are exceeded whilst remaining within your budget.’
    • ‘With only £5,000 for repairs they struggled to meet the builders' quotation of £30,000 to transform two farmhouses into holiday cottages.’
    • ‘Many insurers will not provide motor insurance quotations for certain careers.’
    estimate, estimated price, price, quote, tender, bid, cost, charge, rate, figure
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1Stock Market A price offered by a market-maker for the sale or purchase of a stock or other security.
      • ‘While stock and bond prices are attaining new record quotations and prices, the productive basis of an economy may be eroding and vice versa.’
      • ‘Because the day trader needs to monitor stock prices constantly, live price quotations are essential to his or her success.’
      • ‘During the take-over battle the stock quotations of both enterprises rose so that an investor would have to wait several hundred years to finance the purchase price of the shares from the present level of profits.’
      • ‘If you come across a broker offering to secure quotations on your behalf you will need to consider the following.’
  • 3Stock Market
    A registration granted to a company enabling their shares to be officially listed and traded.

    ‘the company is being refused a quotation on the New York Stock Exchange’
    • ‘Like foreign bonds, international share quotations have existed almost as long as stock markets themselves.’
    • ‘Knutsford was a tiny Manchester-based leather goods manufacturer, effectively a shell with a recently-acquired stock market quotation.’


Mid 16th century (denoting a marginal reference to a passage of text): from medieval Latin quotatio(n-), from the verb quotare (see quote).