Meaning of legation in English:


Pronunciation /lɪˈɡeɪʃ(ə)n/

See synonyms for legation

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  • 1A diplomatic minister, especially one below the rank of ambassador, and their staff.

    ‘they placed a bomb on the train carrying the British Legation to Istanbul’
    • ‘The Department of Foreign Affairs responded by issuing the following memo to all Irish legations and consulates abroad.’
    • ‘From 1931 to 1976 he worked in various diplomatic legations in Moscow.’
    • ‘The German legation in Bern told the Swiss government on 27 March that the German High Command would require eight weeks to prepare an exchange.’
    • ‘In 1900 the Boxers besieged the foreign legations in Beijing for two months until they were relieved by an international force which occupied and looted the capital; Cixi and the emperor fled in disguise.’
    • ‘Most western legations report a massive increase in passport and visa enquiries, but the Italians and Spaniards have borne the brunt of the onslaught.’
    • ‘The German minister was murdered on his way to the foreign office on 20 June, and that afternoon the legations were attacked.’
    • ‘He then declared the house an annex of the Swiss legation, and eventually extended diplomatic immunity to 72 buildings in Budapest, moving as many Jews into them as possible.’
    • ‘When the European legations were besieged in China's capital it was the Russians, with their garrisons and ships close at hand in Port Arthur, who did most in the raising of the siege.’
    • ‘Not until the creation of the British legation in 1915 were formal diplomatic relations re-established with Rome.’
    • ‘She arrived there in 1934, aged 17, when her father was appointed secretary of the Irish legation to the US.’
    • ‘He is then heard of as plotting with Garibaldi in Italy, as secretary of a legation in Japan, and in other parts of the world.’
    • ‘After a siege of two months, from 14 June to 14 August 1900, allied troops entered Beijing and relieved the foreign legations.’
    • ‘In June 1900, supported by the Manchu dynasty, the Boxers laid siege to the foreign legations in Peking.’
    • ‘As part of a contingent of marines from the USS Newark, Silva assisted in defending the British legation in Beijing until its relief by the allied army.’
    • ‘When the combined expeditionary forces relieved the siege of the foreign legations in Peking, we exacted our revenge.’
    • ‘The various foreign legations in Bangkok had requested naval support.’
    • ‘On September 8, the Thai legation in Washington DC, USA announced that the designation for the nation abroad would be Siam and not Thailand.’
    • ‘After the wars, when Bulgaria was experiencing a serious economic and political crisis, Yovkov was appointed clerk at the Bulgarian legation in Bucharest, Romania.’
    • ‘There was also a report that Japan was dispatching its troops to Korea on the pretext of protecting its legation.’
    diplomatic mission, mission, embassy, consulate, ministry, delegation, deputation, representation, contingent, commission
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    1. 1.1The official residence of a diplomatic minister.
      • ‘The soldiers at the legation stayed in their tents to maintain the appearance that they were guarding something.’
      embassy, consulate, diplomatic establishment
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  • 2 archaic The position or office of legate; a legateship.

    ‘Mary found herself denounced by the pope as ‘the wife of a schismatic’, Cardinal Pole's legation was revoked, and he was summoned to Rome to answer charges of heresy.’
    • ‘In 1528, the new cardinal moved to Rome and remained there until September 1535, when the newly elected Paul III assigned him the papal legation to Perugia.’


Late Middle English (denoting the sending of a papal legate; also the mission itself): from Latin legatio(n-), from legare ‘depute, delegate, bequeath’.