Webster 1913 Edition



: cf. F.
The act of erecting, or raising upright; the act of constructing, as a building or a wall, or of fitting together the parts of, as a machine; the act of founding or establishing, as a commonwealth or an office; also, the act of rousing to excitement or courage.
The state of being erected, lifted up, built, established, or founded; exaltation of feelings or purposes.
Her peerless height my mind to high
draws up.
State of being stretched to stiffness; tension.
Anything erected; a building of any kind.

Webster 1828 Edition



The act of raising and setting perpendicular to the plane of the horizon; a setting upright.
The act of raising or building, as an edifice or fortification; as the erection of a wall, or of a house.
The state of being raised, built or elevated.
Establishment; settlement; formation; as the erection of a commonwealth, or of a new system; the erection of a bishop-rick or an earldom.
Elevation; exaltation of sentiments.
Her peerless height my mind to high erection draws up.
Act of rousing; excitement; as the erection of the spirits.
Any thing erected; a building of any kind.
Distension and extension.

Definition 2021



See also: érection



erection (countable and uncountable, plural erections)

  1. (uncountable) The act of building or putting up or together of something; construction.
    Erection of a large tent
  2. (countable) Anything erected or built.
    The Empire State Building was once the world's tallest erection.
  3. (uncountable, physiology) The physiological process by which erectile tissue, such as a **** or clitoris, becomes erect by being engorged with blood.
    • 1997, Alan Hyde, Bodies of Law, Princeton University Press (1997), ISBN 9781400822317, page 175:
      I think that the case also demonstrates some singular aspects of the **** as a narrator of tales, specifically the way in which the erection of a **** falls outside a man's conscious control and therefore threatens a carefully constructed master legal narrative in which bodily self-control graphically represents the self-government contemplated by a democratic legal society.
    • 2006, Lori Marso, Feminist Thinkers and the Demands of Femininity: The Lives and Work of Intellectual Women, Routledge (2006), ISBN 0415979269, unnumbered pages (quoting Simone Beauvoir):
      There are men who say they cannot bear to show themselves naked before women unless in a state of erection; and indeed through erection the flesh becomes activity, potency, []
    • 2007, Edward J. Behrend-Martinez, Unfit for Marriage: Impotent Spouses on Trial in the Basque Region of Spain, 1650-1750, University of Nevada Press (2007), ISBN 9780874176995, page 14:
      A marriage was only consummated via erection, penetration, and insemination intra vas.
  4. (uncountable, physiology, of a **** or clitoris) The state or quality of being erect from engorgement with blood.
    • 1749, John Cleland, Fanny Hill: Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure, Part 2
      [] but our experienc'd matron very soon, by chafing it with her hands, brought it to swell to that size and erection I had before seen it up to.
    • 2008, Robert Crooks & Karla Baur, Our Sexuality, Thomson Wadsworth (2008), ISBN 9780495095545, page 163:
      Older men typically require longer periods of time to achieve erection and reach orgasm.
    • 2011, Alan L. Rubin, Diabetes for Dummies, Wiley Publishing, Inc. (2008), ISBN 9780470270868, page 104:
      A very rare complication is priapism, where the **** maintains its erection for many hours.
  1. (countable) A **** or clitoris that is erect.
    He placed his newspaper on his lap to hide his erection.
    • 2002, Marguerite Crump, No B.O.!: The Head-to-Toe Book of Hygiene for Preteens, Free Spirit Publishing (2005), ISBN 9781575427003, page 85:
      The surge of hormones during puberty means you might have lots of erections, even when you don't want them—like during school.
    • 2006, Abha Dawesar, That Summer in Paris, Anchor Books (2007), ISBN 9780307275455, page 259:
      Prem was sure everyone could see his erection through his pants, everyone but Maya, who he had been careful to keep to his side all the time
    • 2007, Ken Follett, World Without End, Dutton (2007), ISBN 9780525950073, page 244:
      He kissed her again, this time with a long, moist kiss that gave him an erection.


  • (act of building): building, construction.
  • (anything erected or built): building, construction.
  • (state of a **** being erect): see also Wikisaurus:erection.
  • (an erect ****): see also Wikisaurus:erect ****.


Related terms



Middle French


Borrowing from Latin erectiō.


erection f (plural erections)

  1. erection (of a building, etc.)
  2. erection (penile)


  • erection on Dictionnaire du Moyen Français (1330-1500) (in French)