an·​nu·​al | \ ˈan-yə(-wə)l How to pronounce annual (audio) , -yü-əl \

Definition of annual

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : covering the period of a year annual rainfall annual income
2 : occurring or happening every year or once a year : yearly an annual reunion an annual physical checkup
3 : completing the life cycle in one growing season or single year annual plants



Definition of annual (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an event that occurs yearly
2 : a publication appearing yearly the high-school annual
3 : something that lasts one year or season specifically : a plant that completes its life cycle in one growing season

Examples of annual in a Sentence

Adjective The annual meeting is in July. The company's earnings for last year are published in the annual report. We had more snow this year than the average annual amount. The company charges an annual fee of $45. Noun We planted some annuals in front of the house.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Gurjar, then 30, was hired at an annual salary of $50,400. Washington Post, 4 Jan. 2022 The 53-year-old British actor was deemed a CMG, Companion of the Order of St. Michael and St. George, for his services to film and theatre as part of Queen Elizabeth's annual New Year's honors list. Benjamin Vanhoose,, 3 Jan. 2022 Perpetually impoverished Peru has an annual government budget that’s a microscopic fraction of the U.S. John Tamny, Forbes, 2 Jan. 2022 Because Variety500 is an annual list, recent career performance is more heavily weighted than previous work. Andrew Wallenstein, Variety, 21 Dec. 2021 Spotify Technology SA on Tuesday released its 2021 Wrapped, an annual list highlighting how its roughly 381 million monthly active users and 172 million paying subscribers around the world used the app. Omar Abdel-baqui, WSJ, 1 Dec. 2021 Bilanski attached a letter from Christy Schmidt, a former Bend Timbers treasurer and board member who denies Bilanski stole from the organization and that Bilanski’s camp payments were noted in each annual budget approved by the board. Garrett Andrews | The Bulletin, oregonlive, 11 Nov. 2021 The awards were hosted by the Hollywood Reporter, which publishes an annual list of the area’s top thirty real-estate agents. Sheila Yasmin Marikar, The New Yorker, 11 Oct. 2021 Some in the city have pointed to the annual SantaCon, which was held on Dec. 11 and featured thousands of people dressed as Santa Claus in a massive pub crawl, for the spike in cases. Fox News, 21 Dec. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Live entertainment for the fourth annual, Carnival-style party will feature rapper Lil Wayne, DJs Zedd and Diplo and a special performance by a 7-1 man who’s likely the tallest DJ on the planet. Josh Peter, USA TODAY, 6 Jan. 2022 Besides its good looks, 'Royal Velvet' is a fragrant annual with a distinct scent that's especially strong in late afternoon and early evening. Sheryl Geerts, Better Homes & Gardens, 19 May 2021 Area garden centers can help residents choose from a wide variety of deer-resistant annuals and perennials. cleveland, 4 June 2020 John Cooley, an entomologist at the University of Connecticut, says their relatively long life cycles aren’t what distinguish periodical cicadas from annuals. Amy Mckeever, National Geographic, 3 June 2020 Plant single species or mixes of warm-season annuals about one inch deep. Gerald Almy, Field & Stream, 28 May 2020 At Bigelow Nurseries in Northborough, Mass., workers stayed hours after closing on Friday, pulling in annuals like begonias and petunias. Maria Cramer, New York Times, 9 May 2020 Choose drought-tolerant plants and/or native vegetation, and perennials instead of annuals. Susan Jin Davis, NBC News, 22 Apr. 2020 Except for the biennial foxglove, all of those are annuals — plants that arise not from their roots the following year (as perennials and biennials do) but deposit some of their seed to sprout when conditions are favorable. Margaret Roach, New York Times, 28 Apr. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'annual.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of annual


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for annual

Adjective and Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French & Late Latin; Anglo-French annuel, from Late Latin annualis, blend of Latin annuus yearly (from annus year) and Latin annalis yearly (from annus year); probably akin to Goth athnam (dative plural) years, Sanskrit atati he walks, goes

Learn More About annual

Time Traveler for annual

Time Traveler

The first known use of annual was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near annual



annual bluegrass

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for annual

Last Updated

9 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Annual.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jan. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for annual



English Language Learners Definition of annual

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: happening once a year
: covering the period of a year
: living for only one year or season : having a life cycle that is one year or season long



English Language Learners Definition of annual (Entry 2 of 2)

: a plant that lives for only one year or season
: a book or magazine that is published once a year


an·​nu·​al | \ ˈan-yə-wəl How to pronounce annual (audio) \

Kids Definition of annual

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : coming, happening, done, made, or given once a year The library holds an annual book sale.
2 : completing the life cycle in one growing season annual plants

Other Words from annual

annually adverb She visits her aunt annually.



Kids Definition of annual (Entry 2 of 2)

: an annual plant


Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Thing: Flower Edition

Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!