1. A regular occupation, especially one for which a person is particularly suited or qualified.
a. An inclination or aptness for a certain kind of work: a vocation for medicine.
b. Theology A calling of an individual by God, especially for a religious career.
[Middle English vocacioun, divine call to a religious life, from Old French vocation, from Latin vocātiō, vocātiōn-, a calling, from vocātus, past participle of vocāre, to call; see wekw- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.