November 20, 2014
tradition (noun)
\truh-DISH-un\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
1 : the handing down of information, beliefs, or customs from one generation to another2 : a belief or custom handed down by tradition
How do you use it?
It is a tradition in Hawaii to present a necklace of flowers, called a lei, as a token of welcome or farewell.
Are you a word wiz?

Which word do you think comes from the same origin as "tradition"?

The words "tradition" and "treason" both come from the same Latin source. That source is the word "traditio", meaning "the action of handing something over." In the case of "tradition," the thing being handed over is information about cultural beliefs and customs, from one generation to the next, so that the tradition continues. In the case of "treason," the thing being handed over is secret information when doing so is an act of betrayal. The word "tradition" was borrowed directly from the Latin "traditio." "Treason," on the other hand, came to us through early French, where "tradition" had changed into the word "traisun."
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