de·​cade ˈde-ˌkād How to pronounce decade (audio)
 especially sense 1b  ˈde-kəd
: a group or set of 10
his prisoners were divided into decadesWilliam Godwin
: such as
: a period of 10 years
has been teaching for over a decade
the decade of the twenties
Roman Catholicism : a division of the rosary that consists primarily of 10 Hail Marys
mathematics : a ratio of 10 to 1 : order of magnitude
decadal adjective

Example Sentences

The war lasted nearly a decade. The bridge was built a decade ago. The decade of the 1920s runs from January 1, 1920 to December 31, 1929. the first decade of the 21st century There have been a lot of changes during the past two decades.
Recent Examples on the Web To Pheelz, Afrobeats has grown into something his generation could only dream of a decade ago. Nelson C.j., Rolling Stone, 3 Mar. 2023 An official gauge of manufacturing rose at the fastest pace in more than a decade in February, while export orders expanded for the first time in almost two years, the National Bureau of Statistics said Wednesday. Heard Editors, WSJ, 2 Mar. 2023 The ceremony also scored its highest share (54%) of 16-34-year-old viewers in more than a decade, confirming the big move to Saturday night had paid off. Mark Sutherland, Variety, 1 Mar. 2023 The two-time Academy Award nominee had owned the property for more than a decade, purchasing the land in 2009 for $8.25 million, public records show. Rachel Silva, ELLE Decor, 28 Feb. 2023 For more than a decade, Rhode Island’s congressional delegation was this slightly adorable brotherhood. Globe Columnist,, 28 Feb. 2023 According to the Hollywood Reporter, Davies has a doctorate in history from UC Berkeley, clerked for a federal judge in L.A., and practiced law for more than a decade before making the transition to television. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, 28 Feb. 2023 With its best conference record in more than a decade, USC (21-8, 11-7 Pac-12) is the No. 6 seed facing No. 11 Oregon State at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Michelob Ultra Arena. Austin Knoblauchassistant Editor, Los Angeles Times, 27 Feb. 2023 For more than a decade, Russia and the U.S. reportedly have each sought to make digital incursions in the other's electric grid, planting probes that could disable power plants and trigger blackouts if a conflict escalated. The Week Staff, The Week, 26 Feb. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'decade.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English, from Middle French décade, from Late Latin decad-, decas, from Greek dekad-, dekas, from deka — see deca-

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of decade was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near decade

Cite this Entry

“Decade.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 31 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


de·​cade ˈdek-ˌād How to pronounce decade (audio)
 sense 3 is usually  ˈdek-əd
: a group or set of 10
: a period of 10 years
: a part of the rosary made up mainly of 10 Hail Marys

More from Merriam-Webster on decade

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