adjective tem·po·rary \ˈtem-pə-ˌrer-ē\

: continuing for a limited amount of time : not permanent

: intended to be used for a limited amount of time

Full Definition of TEMPORARY

:  lasting for a limited time
tem·po·rar·i·ness noun

Examples of TEMPORARY

  1. The drug will give you temporary relief from the pain.
  2. The delay is only temporary.
  3. The settlers built temporary shelters.


Latin temporarius, from tempor-, tempus time
First Known Use: circa 1564

Rhymes with TEMPORARY

actuary, adversary, airy-fairy, ancillary, antiquary, apiary, arbitrary, aviary, axillary, bacillary, beriberi, bestiary, biliary, black raspberry, Bloody Mary, boysenberry, breviary, budgetary, calamari, calamary, candleberry, Canterbury, capillary, carpellary, cassowary, catenary, cautionary, cavitary, cemetery, centenary, certiorari, checkerberry, chinaberry, cometary, commentary, commissary, condottiere, coralberry, corollary, coronary, culinary, customary, dictionary, dietary, dignitary, dromedary, dysentery, elderberry, emissary, estuary, farkleberry, February, formulary, fragmentary, fritillary, functionary, funerary, honorary, huckleberry, intermarry, janissary, January, lamasery, lapidary, lectionary, legendary, legionary, lingonberry, literary, loganberry, luminary, mammillary, mandatary, maxillary, medullary, mercenary, miliary, military, millenary, milliary, millinery, missionary, momentary, monastery, mortuary, necessary, ordinary, ossuary, partridgeberry, pensionary, pigmentary, planetary, Pondicherry, prebendary, presbytery, pulmonary, quaternary, red mulberry, reliquary, rowanberry, salivary, salmonberry, salutary, sanctuary, sanguinary, sanitary, secondary, secretary, sedentary, seminary, silverberry, solitary, sour cherry, stationary, stationery, statuary, subcontrary, sublunary, sugarberry, sumptuary, syllabary, tertiary, thimbleberry, Tipperary, Tom and Jerry, topiary, tributary, tutelary, Typhoid Mary, unitary, urinary, vestiary, Virgin Mary, visionary, voluntary, vulnerary, Waterbury, whortleberry, winterberry


plural temporar·ies

Definition of TEMPORARY

:  one serving for a limited time <adding several temporaries as typists during the summer>

First Known Use of TEMPORARY


Other Business Terms

amortize, caveat emptor, clearinghouse, divest, due diligence, emolument, green-collar, marque, overhead, perquisite
TEMPORARY Defined for Kids


adjective tem·po·rary \ˈtem-pə-ˌrer-ē\

Definition of TEMPORARY for Kids

:  not permanent <We performed on a temporary stage.>
tem·po·rar·i·ly \ˌtem-pə-ˈrer-ə-lē\ adverb

Word Root of TEMPORARY

The Latin word tempus, meaning time,and its form temporis give us the roots temp and tempor. Words from the Latin tempus have something to do with time. Something temporary lasts only a short time. Someone or something contemporary lives or occurs at the same time as someone or something else. A tempo is the speed at which music is performed in time.
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