noun op·tion \ˈäp-shən\

: the opportunity or ability to choose something or to choose between two or more things

: something that can be chosen : a choice or possibility

: a right to buy or sell something for a specified price during a specified period of time

Full Definition of OPTION

:  an act of choosing
a :  the power or right to choose :  freedom of choice
b :  a privilege of demanding fulfillment of a contract on any day within a specified time
c :  a contract conveying a right to buy or sell designated securities, commodities, or property interest at a specified price during a stipulated period; also :  the right conveyed by an option
d :  a right of an insured person to choose the form in which payments due on a policy shall be made or applied
:  something that may be chosen: as
a :  an alternative course of action <didn't have many options open>
b :  an item that is offered in addition to or in place of standard equipment
:  an offensive football play in which a back may choose whether to pass or run with the ball —called also option play

Origin of OPTION

French, from Latin option-, optio free choice; akin to Latin optare to choose
First Known Use: 1593

Synonym Discussion of OPTION

choice, option, alternative, preference, selection, election mean the act or opportunity of choosing or the thing chosen. choice suggests the opportunity or privilege of choosing freely <freedom of choice>. option implies a power to choose that is specifically granted or guaranteed <the option of paying now or later>. alternative implies a need to choose one and reject another possibility <equally attractive alternatives>. preference suggests a choice guided by one's judgment or predilections <a preference for cool weather>. selection implies a range of choice <a varied selection of furniture>. election implies an end or purpose which requires exercise of judgment <doing a tax return forces certain elections on you>.

choice, exquisite, elegant, rare, delicate, dainty mean having qualities that appeal to a cultivated taste. choice stresses preeminence in quality or kind <choice fabric>. exquisite implies a perfection in workmanship or design that appeals only to very sensitive taste <an exquisite gold bracelet>. elegant applies to what is rich and luxurious but restrained by good taste <a sumptuous but elegant dining room>. rare suggests an uncommon excellence <rare beauty>. delicate implies exquisiteness, subtlety, and fragility <delicate craftsmanship>. dainty sometimes carries an additional suggestion of smallness and of appeal to the eye or palate <dainty sandwiches>.

Other Business Terms

amortize, caveat emptor, clearinghouse, divest, due diligence, emolument, green-collar, marque, overhead, perquisite



Definition of OPTION

transitive verb
:  to grant or take an option on
:  to acquire the exclusive right to use (an author's work) as the basis for a motion picture <the studio optioned the novel for a film>

First Known Use of OPTION


Other Economics Terms

actuary, compound interest, globalization, indemnity, portfolio, rentier, stagflation, usurer
OPTION Defined for Kids


noun op·tion \ˈäp-shən\

Definition of OPTION for Kids

:  the power or right to choose <Children have an option between milk or juice.>
:  something that can be chosen <Quitting is not an option.>
:  a right to buy or sell something at a specified price during a specified period <His parents took an option on the house.>


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