generation

noun
gen·​er·​a·​tion | \ ˌje-nə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce generation (audio) \

Definition of generation

1a : a body of living beings constituting a single step in the line of descent from an ancestor
b : a group of individuals born and living contemporaneously the younger generation
c : a group of individuals having contemporaneously a status (such as that of students in a school) which each one holds only for a limited period
d : a type or class of objects usually developed from an earlier type first of the … new generation of powerful supersonic fighters— Kenneth Koyen
2a : the action or process of producing offspring : procreation
b : the process of coming or bringing into being generation of income
c : origination by a generating process : production especially : formation of a geometric figure by motion of another
3 : the average span of time between the birth of parents and that of their offspring

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Other Words from generation

generational \ ˌje-​nə-​ˈrā-​shnəl How to pronounce generational (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective
generationally \ ˌje-​nə-​ˈrā-​shnə-​lē How to pronounce generationally (audio) , shə-​nᵊl-​ē \ adverb

Examples of generation in a Sentence

She was worshipped by a generation of moviegoers. He was a hero to generations of students. We need to preserve these resources for future generations. His books are popular among members of the younger generation. That family has lived in the same house for four generations. The house has been passed down in the family from generation to generation. He has held that position for a generation. No one dreamed that such things would be possible a generation ago. The company claims to be developing the next generation of portable computers.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Marco Martinez, 25, a research analyst in Los Angeles, is part of a younger generation of men that’s rediscovering the power of permeability. Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, "Who Needs Gender? Why Men and Women Are Dressing Identically," 21 Feb. 2019 The end result, if the genetic modifications work as intended, is that an entire generation of mosquitoes won’t be able to feed or breed. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Scientists Are Testing a Way to Exterminate Mosquitoes for Good," 20 Feb. 2019 The launch of the Air Force's first GPS 3 satellite is important to the military, because this new generation of satellites will broadcast more secure and more accurate signals than existing GPS spacecraft. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "Tuesday may deliver a triple-header of big launches to cap 2018," 17 Dec. 2018 And as much as making a bag that lasts matters to them, the founders still understand that this new generation of travelers (and likely those who come after) want a brand that gives them the freedom to express their individuality. Lale Arikoglu, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why Everyone Wants an Away Suitcase," 26 Nov. 2018 Instagram, which has grown rapidly and is popular with the younger generation of users who are less interested in Facebook, has been a consistent beacon of good news for a company that has had more than a year of bad news. Kurt Wagner, Recode, "Instagram’s co-founders, Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, are leaving amid frustrations with parent company Facebook," 25 Sep. 2018 Editing the genes of embryos is more contentious than altering the genes of adults because those changes are heritable and can be passed on to future generations. Preetika Rana, WSJ, "WHO Reacts to Chinese Gene-Edited Twins With Plan for Global Guidelines," 21 Feb. 2019 Millennials and Gen-Zs are identifying as LGBTQ at higher percentages than any previous generation. Samantha Allen, Seventeen, "LGBTQ Teens Don't Need To Leave Red States For College," 19 Feb. 2019 The biggest impact, however, was being surrounded by women of different generations—watching the young female scientists exhibiting their findings and Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett and Dr. Jo Handlesman excitedly participating. Yara Shahidi, Teen Vogue, ""Yes She Can" Is the Yara Shahidi-Approved Collection of Stories From Young Women Staffers of the Obama White House," 14 Jan. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for generation

Middle English generacioun "procreation, development, offspring, lineage," borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French generacion, borrowed from Late Latin generātiōn-, generātiō, going back to Latin, "procreation," from generāre "to bring into being, generate" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of action nouns

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Last Updated

12 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for generation

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

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More Definitions for generation

generation

noun

English Language Learners Definition of generation

: a group of people born and living during the same time
: the people in a family born and living during the same time
: the average length of time between the birth of parents and the birth of their children

generation

noun
gen·​er·​a·​tion | \ ˌje-nə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce generation (audio) \

Kids Definition of generation

1 : those being a single step in a line originating from one ancestor This family has lived in town for four generations.
2 : a group of individuals born and living at about the same time the younger generation
3 : the act or process of producing or creating something the generation of heat

generation

noun
gen·​er·​a·​tion | \ ˌjen-ə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce generation (audio) \

Medical Definition of generation

1a : a body of living beings constituting a single step in the line of descent from an ancestor
b : a group of individuals born and living contemporaneously
2 : the average span of time between the birth of parents and that of their offspring
3 : the action or process of producing offspring : procreation

Other Words from generation

generational \ -​shnəl, -​shən-​ᵊl How to pronounce generational (audio) \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on generation

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with generation

Spanish Central: Translation of generation

Nglish: Translation of generation for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of generation for Arabic Speakers

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