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traf·fic (trăfĭk)
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n.
1.
a. The passage of people or vehicles along routes of transportation.
b. Vehicles or pedestrians in transit: heavy traffic on the turnpike; stopped oncoming traffic to let the children cross.
2.
a. The commercial exchange of goods; trade.
b. Illegal or improper commercial activity: drug traffic on city streets. See Synonyms at business.
3.
a. The business of moving passengers and cargo through a transportation system.
b. The amount of cargo or number of passengers conveyed.
4.
a. The conveyance of messages or data through a system of communication: routers that manage internet traffic.
b. Messages or data conveyed through such a system: a tremendous amount of telephone traffic on Mother's Day; couldn't download the file due to heavy internet traffic.
c. The number of users or visitors, as at a website: attempted to increase traffic with a redesigned homepage.
5. Social or verbal exchange; communication: refused further traffic with the estranged friend.
v. traf·ficked, traf·fick·ing, traf·fics
intr.v.
To carry on trade or other dealings: trafficked in liquidation merchandise; traffic with gangsters.
tr.v.
To provide to others, especially in large quantities, in exchange for money: was accused of trafficking guns to local gangs.

[French trafic, from Old French trafique, from Old Italian traffico, from trafficare, to trade, perhaps from Catalan trafegar, to decant, from Vulgar Latin *trānsfaecāre : trāns-, trans- + faex, faec-, dregs; see FECES.]

traffick·er n.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

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