cir·​ca | \ ˈsər-kə How to pronounce circa (audio) \

Definition of circa

: at approximately, in approximately, or of approximately used especially with dates born circa 1600

Examples of circa in a Sentence

He was born circa 1600.

Recent Examples on the Web

The home, circa 1930, celebrates an elaborate Tudor theme with gothic details like casement windows and a limestone arch, brickwork and terra-cotta panels, plus an overall atmosphere of Downton Abbey-esque stylings, according to 6sqft. Kelsey Kloss, ELLE Decor, "This New York City Apartment Looks Like It's Straight Out Of "Downton Abbey"," 30 June 2016 Reed-Brown performs sleight-of-hand tricks while walking among them in this circa 1896 house., "Community News For The Farmington Valley Edition," 15 July 2019 Across the Indian River from the Kennedy Space Center, this circa 1964 burger joint sports the same signage that used to draw in space workers during the Apollo days for a hearty, car hop–delivered meal. Robert Ormerod, National Geographic, "5 stellar ways to see Florida’s Space Coast," 12 July 2019 Scholars generally agree that Sampson was born in Plympton, Massachusetts, circa 1760. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Diary Sheds Light on Deborah Sampson, Who Fought in the Revolutionary War," 2 July 2019 Clad in a black, kneelength NASCAR T-shirt and ripped jeans a la Def Leppard circa 1987, the Detroit songstress emerged to waves of young women’s screams, only to be halted within seconds as the digital drums abruptly cut out. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Summerfest 2019: Steve Aoki, Hanson and the best and the worst on the side stages on opening day," 27 June 2019 Below, find an aerial photo of the camp taken circa 1962, as well as a photo of German prisoners working as part of a neighborhood beautification detail in a New Orleans. Mike Scott,, "‘Voodoo City,’ Episode 10: New Orleans’ Nazi problem," 24 June 2019 In another evocative dual portrait, circa 1966, Tames caught Rep. Adam Clayton Powell Jr. and black power activist Stokely Carmichael sharing a private laugh in the white marble corridors of the Rayburn House Office Building. WSJ, "‘In Mid-Sentence’ Review: An Ad Hoc Genre," 18 June 2019 While in high school, circa 2003, Natural High's Jordan Armond and Blaise Davis began making music for their sound system. Patricia Meschino, Billboard, "Natural High Music Premieres 'Be The One' ft. Tessanne Chin on Delicious Vinyl Island: Exclusive," 13 June 2019

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

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First Known Use of circa

1861, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for circa

Latin, from circum around — more at circum-

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Statistics for circa

Last Updated

5 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for circa

The first known use of circa was in 1861

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English Language Learners Definition of circa

formal : about or around

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for circa

Spanish Central: Translation of circa

Nglish: Translation of circa for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of circa for Arabic Speakers

Comments on circa

What made you want to look up circa? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to shake or wave menacingly

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