cycle

noun
cy·​cle | \ ˈsī-kəl How to pronounce cycle (audio) \

Definition of cycle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an interval of time during which a sequence of a recurring succession of events or phenomena is completed a 4-year cycle of growth and development
2a : a course or series of events or operations that recur regularly and usually lead back to the starting point … the common cycle of birth, growth, senescence, and death.— T. C. Schneirla and Gerard Piel
b : one complete performance of a vibration, electric oscillation, current alternation, or other periodic process
c : a permutation of a set of ordered elements in which each element takes the place of the next and the last becomes first
d : a takeoff and landing of an airplane
3 : a circular or spiral arrangement: such as
a : an imaginary circle or orbit in the heavens
4 : a long period of time : age
5a : a group of creative works (such as poems, plays, or songs) treating the same theme a cycle of poems about unrequited love
b : a series of narratives dealing typically with the exploits of a legendary hero the Arthurian cycle
6a : bicycle
b : tricycle
7 : the series of a single, double, triple, and home run hit in any order by one player during one baseball game

cycle

verb
cycled; cycling\ ˈsī-​k(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce cycle (audio) \

Definition of cycle (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to pass through a cycle The menu cycles through all the options. Because the traditional HVAC system cycles on and off—and is powered down when you leave—relief is inconsistent at best.— Sarah Littleton
b : to recur in cycles Freezing temperatures … aren't the problem. It's when temperatures cycle between freezing and thaws, causing pavement to contract and expand … that can create larger issues.— Jonathan Oosting
2 : to ride a cycle specifically : bicycle She cycles to work.

transitive verb

: to cause to go through a cycle The fact that it [the pump] runs constantly may be a bad sign. It may be cycling the water, not removing it.Popular Mechanics Everything is constantly cycled in nature. There is abundant waste in nature, just as there is in industry, but in nature waste constantly flows back into living systems.— Paul Hawken and William McDonough

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Other Words from cycle

Verb

cycler \ ˈsī-​k(ə-​)lər How to pronounce cycle (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for cycle

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of cycle in a Sentence

Noun We have to wait for the dishwasher's wash and dry cycles to end. the spin cycle on a washing machine He rode his cycle into town. Verb The water is cycled back into the system after it has been used. The water cycles back into the system.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The Arizona State football team has secured its seventh commitment for the 2022 cycle, the latest addition being safety Tristan Dunn of Sumner High School in Washington. Michelle Gardner, The Arizona Republic, 22 July 2021 Any nonprofit that received a grant in 2020 must complete a grant report to be considered for this current grant cycle, according to a news release. Arkansas Online, 20 July 2021 The poll, the group says, is evidence of the companies’ plans for the next election cycle in Massachusetts. BostonGlobe.com, 17 July 2021 Revenue from the Legacy Fund for the two-year budget cycle that ended last month was about $872 million, up from the $736 million that budget writers and the Legislature had forecast. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 14 July 2021 The Ohio State basketball program has the No. 2 recruiting class in the country for the 2022 cycle and there hasn’t been a commitment in months. Stephen Means, cleveland, 13 July 2021 The foundation will begin accepting grant proposals for the fall/winter cycle on Oct. 1. Post-tribune Staff, chicagotribune.com, 13 July 2021 Last month, Abbott vetoed a section of the state budget that funds the Legislature for the two-year budget cycle that starts Sept. 1. Alexa Ura, Chron, 12 July 2021 The Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors will continue holding meetings virtually for the last legislative cycle before the August recess with plans to return in person in September, County Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson said in a statement. Alison Dirr, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 10 July 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The sensor receives a signal from inside the emergency vehicle to cycle the traffic lights to green, allowing automatic right-of-way. Nataly Keomoungkhoun, Dallas News, 22 July 2021 The defender returned to training with the team on Monday and is prepared to cycle back into the starting roster as early as this weekend. Julia Poe, orlandosentinel.com, 30 June 2021 In Windows 10, Live Tiles allow app developers to cycle through photos and provide dynamic information to you. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, 16 June 2021 To cycle through the settings menu, double tap on the bar, etc. Ben Sin, Forbes, 4 June 2021 More than 800 participants at all three Swaminarayan temples in Leicester, Essex, and London combined to cycle the equivalent of 12,500 miles and raised £700,000. Shafi Musaddique, The Christian Science Monitor, 26 May 2021 Visitors can walk or cycle around the open-air exhibition. Jacqui Palumbo, CNN, 2 June 2021 Jefferson's music and art teachers spent most of the school year traveling from classroom to classroom instead of having children cycle through the art and music rooms. Cynthia Howell, Arkansas Online, 1 June 2021 The hope is that the new site — called Hummingbird Valencia — will ease the burden in the emergency room, where the city’s homeless often cycle through. Trisha Thadani, San Francisco Chronicle, 18 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cycle.' 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 cycle

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1842, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for cycle

Noun and Verb

Middle English cicle, from Late Latin cyclus, from Greek kyklos circle, wheel, cycle — more at wheel

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Time Traveler for cycle

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near cycle

cyclazocine

cycle

cycle billing

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Statistics for cycle

Last Updated

27 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Cycle.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cycle. Accessed 31 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for cycle

cycle

noun

English Language Learners Definition of cycle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a set of events or actions that happen again and again in the same order : a repeating series of events or actions
: a set of regular and repeated actions that are done by a machine as part of a longer process
chiefly British : a bicycle or motorcycle

cycle

verb

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

US : to go through a repeated process or to cause (something) to go through a repeated process
: to ride a bicycle

cycle

noun
cy·​cle | \ ˈsī-kəl How to pronounce cycle (audio) \

Kids Definition of cycle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a period of time taken up by a series of events or actions that repeat themselves again and again in the same order the cycle of the seasons
2 : a complete round or series The dishwasher started its drying cycle.

cycle

verb
cycled; cycling

Kids Definition of cycle (Entry 2 of 2)

: to ride a bicycle or motorcycle

cycle

noun
cy·​cle | \ ˈsī-kəl How to pronounce cycle (audio) \

Medical Definition of cycle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a recurring series of events: as
a(1) : a series of stages through which an organism tends to pass once in a fixed order the common cycle of birth, growth, senescence and death— T. C. Schneirla & Gerard Piel also : a series of stages through which a population of organisms tends to pass more or less in synchrony the mosquito-hatching cycle — see life cycle
(2) : a series of physiological, biochemical, or psychological stages that recur in the same individual — see cardiac cycle, menstrual cycle krebs cycle
b : one complete performance of a vibration, electric oscillation, current alternation, or other periodic process
c : a series of ecological stages through which a substance tends to pass and which usually but not always leads back to the starting point the cycle of nitrogen in the living world

Other Words from cycle

cyclic \ ˈsī-​klik also ˈsik-​lik \ or cyclical \ ˈsī-​kli-​kəl How to pronounce cycle (audio) , ˈsik-​li-​ How to pronounce cycle (audio) \ adjective
cyclically \ -​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce cycle (audio) \ also cyclicly \ ˈsī-​kli-​klē, ˈsik-​li-​ How to pronounce cycle (audio) \ adverb

cycle

intransitive verb
cycled; cycling

Medical Definition of cycle (Entry 2 of 2)

: to undergo the estrous cycle the mare has begun cycling

More from Merriam-Webster on cycle

Nglish: Translation of cycle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cycle for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about cycle

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