Universities, banks, and hospitals are all institutions. Until you arrived at the bank, you'd forgotten that financial institutions were closed for the holiday. Thank goodness for the ATM!

The noun institution also refers to a long held custom or practice in society. Even if your parents divorced when you were young, you might strongly believe in the institution of marriage. Or you might believe that once you enter the institution of marriage, your next stop will probably be a mental institution. Institution can also describe the act of putting something in place. The institution of new traffic rules — green means stop and red means go — caused a bit of confusion.

Definitions of institution
  1. noun
    a custom that for a long time has been an important feature of some group or society
    “the institution of marriage”
    “the institution of slavery”
    “he had become an institution in the theater”
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    the biblical institution whereby a man must marry the widow of his childless brother in order to maintain the brother's line
    type of:
    custom, tradition
    a specific practice of long standing
  2. noun
    an organization founded and united for a specific purpose
    synonyms: establishment
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    medical institution
    an institution created for the practice of medicine
    financial institution, financial organisation, financial organization
    an institution (public or private) that collects funds (from the public or other institutions) and invests them in financial assets
    an institution that issues something (securities or publications or currency etc.)
    an institution set up to provide help to the needy
    an institution created to conduct business
    faith, organized religion, religion
    an institution to express belief in a divine power
    vicariate, vicarship
    the religious institution under the authority of a vicar
    educational institution
    an institution dedicated to education
    academy, honorary society
    an institution for the advancement of art or science or literature
    an establishment for boarding or breeding dogs or cats
    broadcasting company
    a company that manages tv or radio stations
    bureau de change
    (French) an establishment where you can exchange foreign money
    auto company, car company
    a company that makes and sells automobiles
    dot com, dot com company, dot-com
    a company that operates its business primarily on the internet using a URL that ends in `.com'
    drug company, pharma, pharmaceutical company
    a company that makes and sells pharmaceuticals
    East India Company
    an English company formed in 1600 to develop trade with the new British colonies in India and southeastern Asia; in the 18th century it assumed administrative control of Bengal and held it until the British army took over in 1858 after the Indian Mutiny
    electronics company
    a company that makes and sells electronic instruments
    film company
    a company that makes, advertises, and distributes movies
    food company
    a company that processes and sells food
    furniture company
    a company that sells furniture
    mining company
    a company that owns and manages mines
    shipping company
    a company that provides shipping services
    steel company
    a company that makes and sells steel
    subsidiary, subsidiary company
    a company that is completely controlled by another company
    transportation company
    a company providing transportation
    a medical establishment run by a group of medical specialists
    extended care facility
    a medical institution that provides prolonged care (as in cases of prolonged illness or rehabilitation from acute illness)
    a medical institution where sick or injured people are given medical or surgical care
    a British financial system in which a bank or a post office transfers money from one account to another when they receive authorization to do so
    clearing house
    a central collection place where banks exchange checks or drafts; participants maintain an account against which credits or debits are posted
    lending institution
    a financial institution that makes loans
    community chest
    a charity supported by individual subscriptions; defrays the demands on a community for social welfare
    soup kitchen
    a place where food is dispensed to the needy
    a company that markets merchandise
    oil company
    a company that sells oil
    packaging company, packaging concern
    a company that packages goods for sale or shipment or storage
    pipeline company
    a company that operates oil pipelines for the oil industry
    printing business, printing company, printing concern
    a company that does commercial printing
    corporate investor
    a company that invests in (acquires control of) other companies
    takeover target, target company
    a company that has been chosen as attractive for takeover by a potential acquirer
    white knight
    a company that is a friendly acquirer in a takeover
    Christian church, church
    one of the groups of Christians who have their own beliefs and forms of worship
    Hebraism, Jewish religion, Judaism
    Jews collectively who practice a religion based on the Torah and the Talmud
    Hindooism, Hinduism
    the religion of most people in India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal
    religion adhering to the teaching of Lao-tzu
    a religion represented by the many groups (especially in Asia) that profess various forms of the Buddhist doctrine and that venerate Buddha
    the group of initiated Sikhs to which devout orthodox Sikhs are ritually admitted at puberty; founded by the tenth and last Guru in 1699
    Church of Scientology, Scientology
    a new religion founded by L. Ron Hubbard in 1955 and characterized by a belief in the power of a person's spirit to clear itself of past painful experiences through self-knowledge and spiritual fulfillment
    the native religion and former ethnic cult of Japan
    established church
    the church that is recognized as the official church of a nation
    religious order, religious sect, sect
    a subdivision of a larger religious group
    followers of an unorthodox, extremist, or false religion or sect who often live outside of conventional society under the direction of a charismatic leader
    followers of an exclusive system of religious beliefs and practices
    Ld., Ltd., limited company
    a company that is organized to give its owners limited liability
    holding company
    a company with controlling shares in other companies
    a company or agency that performs a public service; subject to government regulation
    livery company
    one of the chartered companies of London originating with the craft guilds
    open shop
    a company whose workers are hired without regard to their membership in a labor union
    closed shop
    a company that hires only union members
    union shop
    a company allowed to hire nonunion workers on the condition that they will join the union within a specified time
    an educational institution for children too young for elementary school
    an educational institution
    an educational institution's faculty and students
    an institution of higher education created to educate and grant degrees; often a part of a university
    Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
    an academy that gives annual awards for achievements in motion picture production and performance
    Academy of Television Arts and Sciences
    an academy that gives annual awards for outstanding achievements in television
    French Academy
    an honorary group of French writers and thinkers supported by the French government
    National Academy of Sciences
    an honorary American society of scientists created by President Lincoln during the American Civil War
    Royal Academy, Royal Academy of Arts
    an honorary academy in London (founded in 1768) intended to cultivate painting and sculpture and architecture in Britain
    Royal Society, Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge
    an honorary English society (formalized in 1660 and given a royal charter by Charles II in 1662) through which the British government has supported science
    a large and diverse institution of higher learning created to educate for life and for a profession and to grant degrees
    central bank
    a government monetary authority that issues currency and regulates the supply of credit and holds the reserves of other banks and sells new issues of securities for the government
    stock company
    a company whose capital is represented by stock
    joint-stock company
    a company (usually unincorporated) which has the capital of its members pooled in a common fund; transferable shares represent ownership interest; shareholders are legally liable for all debts of the company
    an institution supported by an endowment
    the financial institution that dispenses cash in automated teller machines and collects a fee from the bank that issued the credit card
    nondepository financial institution
    a financial institution that funds their investment activities from the sale of securities or insurance
    bank, banking company, banking concern, depository financial institution
    a financial institution that accepts deposits and channels the money into lending activities
    Federal Home Loan Bank System
    the central credit system for thrift institutions
    trust company, trust corporation
    an organization (usually with a commercial bank) that is engaged as a trustee or fiduciary or agent in handling trust funds or estates of custodial arrangements or stock transfers or related services
    record company
    a company that makes and sells musical recordings
    mover, moving company, public mover, removal company, removal firm
    a company that moves the possessions of a family or business from one site to another
    think factory, think tank
    a company that does research for hire and issues reports on the implications
    a company in the business of shipping freight
    a newly established company or business venture
    a newly established company or business venture
    a ministry operated by a religious organization to carry out humanitarian work
    type of:
    organisation, organization
    a group of people who work together
  3. noun
    an establishment consisting of a building or complex of buildings where an organization for the promotion of some cause is situated
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    home, nursing home, rest home
    an institution where people are cared for
    orphanage, orphans' asylum
    a public institution for the care of orphans
    penal facility, penal institution
    an institution where persons are confined for punishment and to protect the public
    a penal institution (especially on board a ship)
    a penal institution (often for forced labor)
    correctional institution
    a penal institution maintained by the government
    penal colony
    a penal institution where prisoners are exiled (often located on an island from which escape is difficult or impossible)
    type of:
    a public or private structure (business or governmental or educational) including buildings and equipment for business or residence
  4. noun
    a hospital for people suffering from mental illnesses or disorders
    synonyms: asylum, insane asylum, mental home, mental hospital, mental institution, psychiatric hospital
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    Bedlam, booby hatch, crazy house, cuckoo's nest, funny farm, funny house, loony bin, madhouse, nut house, nuthouse, sanatorium, snake pit
    pejorative terms for an insane asylum
    type of:
    hospital, infirmary
    a health facility where patients receive treatment
  5. noun
    the act of starting something for the first time; introducing something new
    synonyms: creation, foundation, founding, initiation, innovation, instauration, introduction, origination
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    authorship, paternity
    the act of initiating a new idea or theory or writing
    type of:
    beginning, commencement, start
    the act of starting something
Word Family

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