recitation (n.)

late 15c., recitacion, "account, description, act of detailing, recital," from Old French récitation (14c.) and directly from Latin recitationem (nominative recitatio) "public reading, a reading aloud of judicial decrees or literary works," noun of action from past-participle stem of recitare "read out, read aloud" (see recite).

Meaning "act of repeating aloud what has been committed to memory" is from 1620s; that of "repetition of a prepared lesson" by a pupil or students is by 1770, American English.

updated on May 19, 2021