noun ep·i·sode \ˈe-pə-ˌsōd also -ˌzōd\

: an event or a short period of time that is important or unusual

: a television show, radio show, etc., that is one part of a series

: an occurrence of an illness

Full Definition of EPISODE

:  a usually brief unit of action in a dramatic or literary work: as
a :  the part of an ancient Greek tragedy between two choric songs
b :  a developed situation that is integral to but separable from a continuous narrative :  incident
c :  one of a series of loosely connected stories or scenes
d :  the part of a serial presented at one performance
:  an event that is distinctive and separate although part of a larger series
:  a digressive subdivision in a musical composition

Examples of EPISODE

  1. It was a brief romantic episode in a life devoted to work.
  2. He tried to forget the whole embarrassing episode.
  3. a painful episode from my childhood
  4. Millions of people are expected to watch the show's final episode.

Origin of EPISODE

Greek epeisodion, from neuter of epeisodios coming in besides, from epi- + eisodios coming in, from eis into (akin to Greek en in) + hodos road, journey — more at in
First Known Use: 1678

Synonym Discussion of EPISODE

occurrence, event, incident, episode, circumstance mean something that happens or takes place. occurrence may apply to a happening without intent, volition, or plan <an encounter that was a chance occurrence>. event usually implies an occurrence of some importance and frequently one having antecedent cause <the events following the assassination>. incident suggests an occurrence of brief duration or secondary importance <a minor wartime incident>. episode stresses the distinctiveness or apartness of an incident <a brief romantic episode in a life devoted to work>. circumstance implies a specific detail attending an action or event as part of its setting or background <couldn't recall the exact circumstances>.

Other Performing Arts Terms

diva, dramaturgy, loge, prestidigitation, proscenium, supernumerary, zany
EPISODE Defined for Kids


noun ep·i·sode \ˈe-pə-ˌsōd\

Definition of EPISODE for Kids

:  an event or one of a series of events that stands out clearly <I'm trying to forget the whole embarrassing episode.>
:  one in a series of connected stories or performances
Medical Dictionary


noun ep·i·sode \ˈep-ə-ˌsōd also -ˌzōd\

Medical Definition of EPISODE

:  an event that is distinctive and separate although part of a larger series; especially :  an occurrence of a usually recurrent pathological abnormal condition <a manic episode> <hypoglycemic episodes>
ep·i·sod·ic \ˌep-ə-ˈsäd-ik also -ˈzäd-\ adjective
ep·i·sodi·cal·ly \-i-k(ə-)lē\ adverb


Next Word in the Dictionary: episodicPrevious Word in the Dictionary: episkeletalAll Words Near: episode
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears