from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A party of persons having a common end in view; usually, such a party seeking by irregular means to bring about changes in government or in the existing state of affairs, or in any association of which they form part; a combination of persons using subversive or perverse methods of promoting their own selfish or partizan views or interests, especially in matters of state.
  • noun Combined disorderly opposition to established authority; turbulence; tumult; dissension.
  • noun In Roman antiquity, one of the classes into which the charioteers in the circensian games were divided, one of each contending in a race.
  • noun Synonyms Combination, Party, etc. See cabal.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Anc. Hist.) One of the divisions or parties of charioteers (distinguished by their colors) in the games of the circus.
  • noun A party, in political society, combined or acting in union, in opposition to the government, or state; -- usually applied to a minority, but it may be applied to a majority; a combination or clique of partisans of any kind, acting for their own interests, especially if greedy, clamorous, and reckless of the common good.
  • noun Tumult; discord; dissension.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A form of literature, film etc., that treats real people or events as if they were fiction; a mix of fact and fiction
  • noun A group of people, especially within a political organization, who express a shared belief or opinion different from people who are not part of the group.
  • noun Strife; discord.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a clique (often secret) that seeks power usually through intrigue
  • noun a dissenting clique


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Blend of fact and fiction.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Borrowing from Middle French faction, from Latin factiō, noun of process from perfect passive participle factus, from faciō ("do, make").


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word faction.



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • '"Faction" is a hybrid genre, aiming at the factual accuracy of journalism on the one hand and the literary form of the novel on the other. There is a fundamental tension however between those two aims, given the constraints which factual accuracy places on characterization, plot, and thematic exploration characteristic of the novel. Further, faction cannot be defended on the grounds that factual accuracy is a literary value in faction. Finally, some aspects of faction, such as its inability to refer to sources or provide an analytic framework for a narrative, hinder rather than facilitate the communication of facts.'

    ~ abstract of 'The Case Against Faction' in Philosophy and Literature 32, pp. 347-358

    November 17, 2008