[syn: occupational group, vocation]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Vocation \Vo*ca"tion\ (v[-o]*k[=a]"sh[u^]n), n. [L. vocatio a
bidding, invitation, fr. vocare to call, fr. vox, vocis,
voice: cf. F. vocation. See Vocal.]
1. A call; a summons; a citation; especially, a designation
or appointment to a particular state, business, or
What can be urged for them who not having the
vocation of poverty to scribble, out of mere
wantonness make themselves ridiculous? --Dryden.
2. Destined or appropriate employment; calling; occupation;
trade; business; profession.
He would think his service greatly rewarded, if he
might obtain by that means to live in the sight of
his prince, and yet practice his own chosen
vocation. --Sir. P.
3. (Theol.) A calling by the will of God. Specifically:
(a) The bestowment of God's distinguishing grace upon a
person or nation, by which that person or nation is
put in the way of salvation; as, the vocation of the
Jews under the old dispensation, and of the Gentiles
under the gospel. "The golden chain of vocation,
election, and justification." --Jer. Taylor.
(b) A call to special religious work, as to the ministry.
Every member of the same [the Church], in his
vocation and ministry. --Bk. of Com.
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:
87 Moby Thesaurus words for "vocation":
ambition, apostleship, area, art, aspiration, bag, basis, business,
call, calling, care of souls, career, career building, careerism,
cause, consideration, craft, cup of tea, employment, field, forte,
game, goal, ground, guiding light, guiding star, handicraft,
holy orders, ideal, inspiration, intention, job, lifework, line,
line of business, line of work, lodestar, long suit, main interest,
mainspring, manner, matter, metier, mission, motive, mystery,
number, occupation, pastorage, pastoral care, pastorate,
pet subject, practice, priesthood, priestship, principle,
profession, pursuit, rabbinate, racket, reason, sacred calling,
sake, score, source, specialism, speciality, specialization,
specialty, spring, strong point, style, technicality, the church,
the cloth, the desk, the ministry, the pulpit, thing, trade, type,
ulterior motive, walk, walk of life, way, weakness, work