from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The act of choosing; choice. See Synonyms at choice.
  • n. The power or freedom to choose.
  • n. The exclusive right, usually obtained for a fee, to buy or sell something within a specified time at a set price.
  • n. The privilege of demanding fulfillment of a contract at a specified time.
  • n. A stock option.
  • n. The right of the holder of an insurance policy to specify the manner in which payments are to be made or credited to the policyholder.
  • n. Baseball The right of a major-league team to transfer a player to a minor-league team while being able to recall the player within a specified period.
  • n. Something chosen or available as a choice.
  • n. An item or feature that may be chosen to replace or enhance standard equipment, as in a car.
  • n. Football An offensive play in which a back, usually the quarterback, has the choice of running with the ball or throwing a forward pass.
  • transitive v. To acquire or grant an option on: "had optioned for a film several short stories about two policemen” ( Barbara Goldsmith).
  • transitive v. Baseball To transfer (a major-league player) to a minor-league club on option.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. One of the choices which can be made.
  • n. The freedom or right to choose.
  • n. A contract giving the holder the right to buy or sell an asset at a set strike price; can apply to financial market transactions, or to ordinary transactions for tangible assets such as a residence or automobile.
  • n. A button on a screen used to select an action (often "menu option")
  • v. To purchase an option on something.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The power of choosing; the right of choice or election; an alternative.
  • n. The exercise of the power of choice; choice.
  • n. A wishing; a wish.
  • n. A right formerly belonging to an archbishop to select any one dignity or benefice in the gift of a suffragan bishop consecrated or confirmed by him, for bestowal by himself when next vacant; -- annulled by Parliament in 1845.
  • n. A stipulated privilege, given to a party in a time contract, of demanding its fulfillment on any day within a specified limit; also, the contract giving that privelege.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Choice; wish; preference; election.
  • n. The power or liberty of choosing; the right or power of choice; the opportunity of electing or selecting an alternative or one of several lines of conduct; the power of deciding on a course of action: as, that is not left in my option; it is at your option to take it or leave it.
  • n. In Eng. canon law, the right, now obsolete, which an archbishop formerly had, on consecrating a bishop, of selecting a benefice in the bishop's diocese for one of his own chaplains.
  • n. On stock and other exchanges, a privilege, secured by the payment of a certain premium or consideration, either of calling for the delivery, or
  • n. of making delivery, of a certain specified amount of some particular stock or kind of produce, at a specified price, and within specified limits of time.
  • n. A wishing; a wish.
  • n. Synonyms Option, Choice, Preference, Election. Option is the right of choice, the freedom to choose between two or more: as, “there is no option,”
  • n. Choice is primarily the act of choosing, but, by extension, may be the same as option: as, he gave him the choice. Preference is primarily the state of mind determining the choice, and secondarily the act of choosing. Election emphasizes the leaving of some while choosing others. Choice and preference may apply to that which is chosen; the others not.

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

  • n. the right to buy or sell property at an agreed price; the right is purchased and if it is not exercised by a stated date the money is forfeited
  • n. one of a number of things from which only one can be chosen
  • n. the act of choosing or selecting


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Latin optiō, optiōn-.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From French option, from Latin optiō ("choice; option; act of choosing"), from optō ("I choose, select"). Equivalent to opt +‎ -tion.


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