1 STH YOU OWN (countable usually plural) something that someone owns and keeps or uses themselves: The police went through all the dead girl's possessions. | I packed my remaining possessions into the trunk.
2 STATE OF HAVING STH (U) formal the state of having or owning something, especially a valuable object, piece of information etc: be in sb's possession: The house has been in the family's possession since the s. | be in possession of sth/have sth in your possession (=have something): She was found in possession of stolen goods. | I have in my possession a number of secret documents. | come into sb's possession (=if something comes into your possession, you get it): How did the painting come into your possession? | have possession of (=to own or have something, after you have bought it or taken it from someone else): The finance company now has possession of the house.
3 take possession of sth if you take possession of a house, car, or valuable object, you get it after it has become yours: We didn't take possession of the car until a few days after the auction.
4 DRUGS/GUN (U) law the crime of having illegal drugs or a gun with you or in your home: He faces trial on charges of possession of a loaded firearm.
5 COUNTRY (C) a country controlled or governed by another country: Britain's former overseas possessions
6 BALL (U) the state of having control of the ball in some sports: get/lose possession: Waddell gets possession, and he scores!
7 AMERICAN FOOTBALL (C) a period of time in American football when one team is playing offense 2 and has control of the ball
8 EVIL SPIRITS (U) a situation in which someone's mind is being controlled by an evil spirit: tales of possession and poltergeists and exorcisms
9 in (full) possession of your faculties/senses able to think in a clear and intelligent way and not crazy, or affected by old age: She's over 80 now, but she's still in full possession of all her faculties.
10 possession is nine-tenths of the law used to mean that someone who has something is likely to keep it

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

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