engagement vs appointment

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Senior Member
My dictionary defines both engagement and appointment with "arrangement".

Could someone please tell me what difference between engagement and appointment?

Are engagement and appointment interchangeable in the following examples?

I'd like to make an appointment with Doctor Evans, please.
She had to cancel her dental appointment.

  • Eltheza

    Senior Member
    English - England (Midlands)

    You have an appointment with your doctor or dentist.

    An engagement is more for social arrangements.

    For example: I had a lunch engagement with my friend, Helen, but I had to leave early because I had an appointment with my dentist.


    Senior Member
    English - US
    I have heard appointment used for a social engagement, but only once, and it sounded strange to me. Appointment is appropriate for a meeting with a medical or business professional.
    I rarely hear engagement used conversationally. In the US, we usually just say what we're doing: I'm having lunch with Karen. If we don't want to be explicit, we say we have plans.


    Senior Member
    English - England (Midlands)
    Yes, engagement is very formal!

    Personally, I don't move in the kind of social circles where you'd say, "I have a lunch engagement".

    However, HRH The Prince of Wales might say it;-))!
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