Meaning of “tolerance” in the English Dictionary

"tolerance" in British English

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tolerancenoun

uk /ˈtɒl.ər.əns/ us /ˈtɑː.lɚ.əns/

tolerance noun (ACCEPTANCE)

C2 [ U ] formal toleration, willingness to accept behaviour and beliefs that are different from your own, although you might not agree with or approve of them:

This period in history is not noted for its religious tolerance.
Some members of the party would like to see it develop a greater tolerance of/towards contrary points of view.

More examples

  • The book is essentially an exhortation to religious tolerance.
  • My father never showed much tolerance towards us children.
  • He asked for tolerance of his habits.
  • The two peoples lived together in mutual tolerance.

(Definition of “tolerance” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"tolerance" in American English

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tolerancenoun [ U ]

us /ˈtɑl·ər·əns/

tolerance noun [ U ] (ACCEPTANCE)

also toleration, /ˌtɑl·əˈreɪ·ʃən/ willingness to accept behavior and beliefs that are different from your own, even if you disagree with or disapprove of them:

religious/racial tolerance
There is zero tolerance of violence at this school – if you’re caught fighting, you’ll be suspended.

tolerance noun [ U ] (ABILITY TO BEAR)

the ability to bear something unpleasant or annoying, or to keep going despite difficulties:

I don’t have much tolerance for hot, humid weather.

(Definition of “tolerance” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)