WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
(dev′ə lo̅o̅′shən or, esp. Brit., dē′və-),USA pronunciation n.
dev′o•lu′tion•ar′y, adj., n.,
- the act or fact of devolving;
passage onward from stage to stage.
- the passing on to a successor of an unexercised right.
- Lawmakingthe passing of property from one to another, as by hereditary succession.
- Developmental Biology[Biol.]degeneration.
- Governmentthe transfer of power or authority from a central government to a local government.
- Medieval Latin dēvolūtiōn- (stem of dēvolūtiō) a rolling down, equivalent. to Latin dēvolūt(us) rolled down (past participle of dēvolvere; see devolve) + -iōn- -ion
- Middle French)
- ( 1535–45
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
devolution /ˌdiːvəˈluːʃən/ n
Etymology: 16th Century: from Medieval Latin dēvolūtiō a rolling down, from Latin dēvolvere to roll down, sink into; see devolveˌdevoˈlutionary adj ˌdevoˈlutionist n , adj
- the act, fact, or result of devolving
- a passing onwards or downwards from one stage to another
- a transfer or allocation of authority, esp from a central government to regional governments or particular interests