Approval is a formal agreement. It's probably not a good idea to mail the invitations for your beach party until you've gotten official approval for the enormous bonfire you're planning to light.

Building designs, budgets, grant applications — these all require official approval before they can be put into effect. You can also use the word approval to talk about less formal permission, like a teacher's approval of your plan to buy pizza for the whole class. Approval also means the belief that something is good, like your approval of your neighbor's purple house. Until 1800, it was much more common for people to use the word approvance to mean the same thing.

Definitions of approval

n the formal act of approving

“his decision merited the approval of any sensible person”
approving, blessing
the act of disapproving or condemning
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acceptance, acceptation, adoption, espousal
the act of accepting with approval; favorable reception
backing, backup, championship, patronage
the act of providing approval and support
admiration, appreciation
a favorable judgment
reinforcement, reward
an act performed to strengthen approved behavior
bosom, embrace
a close affectionate and protective acceptance
adoration, idolisation, idolization
the act of admiring strongly
glorification, idealisation, idealization
a portrayal of something as ideal
promise of reward as in "carrot and stick"
Type of:
aiding the cause or policy or interests of

n acceptance as satisfactory

“he bought it on approval
favorable reception, favourable reception
an informal British abbreviation of approval
Type of:
the state of being acceptable and accepted

n a feeling of liking something or someone good

“although she fussed at them, she secretly viewed all her children with approval
a feeling of disliking something or what someone is doing
favor, favour
a feeling of favorable regard
official approval
Type of:
a feeling of pleasure and enjoyment

n a message expressing a favorable opinion

“words of approval seldom passed his lips”
the expression of disapproval
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official recognition or approval
countenance, endorsement, imprimatur, indorsement, sanction, warrant
formal and explicit approval
credit, recognition
connivance, secret approval, tacit consent
(law) tacit approval of someone's wrongdoing
approval to do something
the expression of approval and support
acclaim, acclamation, eclat, plaudit, plaudits
enthusiastic approval
applause, clapping, hand clapping
a demonstration of approval by clapping the hands together
a cry or shout of approval
congratulations, extolment, kudos, praise
an expression of approval and commendation
testimonial, tribute
something given or done as an expression of esteem
authorisation, authority, authorization, sanction
official permission or approval
O.K., OK, okay, okeh, okey
an endorsement
an endorsement made in a passport that allows the bearer to enter the country issuing it
nihil obstat
the phrase used by the official censor of the Roman Catholic Church to say that a publication has been examined and contains nothing offensive to the church
commemoration, memorial, remembrance
a recognition of meritorious service
ovation, standing ovation
enthusiastic recognition (especially one accompanied by loud applause)
salutation, salute
an act of honor or courteous recognition
all clear
permission to proceed because obstacles have been removed
permission to do something
permission to go; the sending away of someone
green light
permission to proceed with a project or to take action
permission to do something
laissez passer, pass
a document indicating permission to do something without restrictions
pass, passport
any authorization to pass or go somewhere
a round of applause to signify approval
a clap of the hands to indicate approval
an outburst of applause
a Japanese cheer of enthusiasm or triumph
a cry of approval as from an audience at the end of great performance
hooray, hurrah
a victory cheer
a sudden outburst of cheers
an exaggerated expression (usually of praise)
encomium, eulogy, paean, panegyric, pean
a formal expression of praise
eulogium, eulogy
a formal expression of praise for someone who has died recently
good word, recommendation, testimonial
something that recommends (or expresses commendation of) a person or thing as worthy or desirable
a remark (or act) expressing praise and admiration
abetment, abettal, instigation
the verbal act of urging on
cheering, shouting
encouragement in the form of cheers from spectators
advancement, furtherance, promotion
encouragement of the progress or growth or acceptance of something
fosterage, fostering
encouragement; aiding the development of something
goad, goading, prod, prodding, spur, spurring, urging
a verbalization that encourages you to attempt something
incitement, provocation
needed encouragement
vote of confidence
an expression of approval and encouragement
Type of:
content, message, subject matter, substance
what a communication that is about something is about

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