Definitions

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

  • n. Enthusiastic, prolonged applause.
  • n. A show of public homage or welcome.
  • n. An ancient Roman victory ceremony of somewhat less importance than a triumph.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. prolonged enthusiastic applause
  • n. a victory ceremony of less importance than a triumph

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A lesser kind of triumph allowed to a commander for an easy, bloodless victory, or a victory over slaves.
  • n. An expression of popular homage; the tribute of the multitude to a public favorite.
  • n. A prolonged applause for a person of group after a speech or performance.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In Roman antiquity, a lesser triumph accorded to commanders who had conquered with little bloodshed, who had defeated a comparatively inconsiderable enemy, or whose advantage, although considerable, was not sufficient to constitute a legitimate claim to the higher distinction of a triumph. See triumph.
  • n. An enthusiastic reception of a person by an assembly or concourse of people with acclamations and other spontaneous expressions of popularity; enthusiastic public homage.

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

  • n. enthusiastic recognition (especially one accompanied by loud applause)

Etymologies

Latin ovātiō, ovātiōn-, a Roman victory ceremony, from ovātus, past participle of ovāre, to rejoice.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin ovationem (accusative of ovatio). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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