ho·​ri·​zon | \ hə-ˈrī-zᵊn How to pronounce horizon (audio) \

Definition of horizon

1a : the line where the earth seems to meet the sky : the apparent junction of earth and sky sailing toward the horizon
b : the great circle on the celestial sphere formed by the intersection of the celestial sphere with a plane tangent to the earth's surface at an observer's position — see azimuth illustration
c : range of perception or experience broaden your horizons
d : something that might be attained opening up new horizons in the field of cancer research
2a geology : a natural soil layer deposited at a particular time usually identified by distinctive fossils
b geology : any of the reasonably distinct layers of soil or its underlying material in a vertical section of land
c anthropology : a cultural area or level of development indicated by separated groups of artifacts

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Other Words from horizon

horizonal \ hə-​ˈrī-​zᵊn-​əl How to pronounce horizonal (audio) \ adjective

Examples of horizon in a Sentence

We sailed toward the horizon. The sun rose slowly over the eastern horizon. These discoveries have opened up new horizons in the field of cancer research.
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Recent Examples on the Web Not a ton of pluses, but West does have something bright on the horizon. Matt Nevala, Anchorage Daily News, "East T-birds whip West in semifinal game of Anchorage football playoffs," 18 Oct. 2020 The dream of providing a shelter for homeless veterans is on the horizon. Mary Grace Keller, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Carroll County Veterans Independence Project finds home in Westminster, seeks executive director," 18 Oct. 2020 And no light on the horizon because our numbers keep going up. NBC News, "Meet the Press - October 18, 2020," 18 Oct. 2020 It’s a murky area today, and that portends thorny problems on the horizon. Amy Webb, Wired, "What Digital Doping Means for Esports—and Everything Else," 16 Oct. 2020 The grassland steppes stretch away to the horizon in the far south of Kazakhstan. National Geographic, "Shamans, sun gods, warriors: Thousands of Bronze Age petroglyphs mark this ancient site," 8 Oct. 2020 Be sure to glance skyward, to the eastern horizon, to see the almost-full moon and nearby bright Mars. Washington Post, "D.C.-area forecast: Brightening skies today with a refreshing breeze as fall weather settles into the region," 2 Oct. 2020 Police waved drivers in and out, and the process moved with nearly the speed of a racetrack pit stop — yet the line still stretched back to the horizon. Don Stacom, courant.com, "Pandemic’s surplus food meets families in need: About 1,700 people receive groceries at Lake Compounce distribution," 2 Oct. 2020 From this hemisphere, Fomalhaut dances close to the southern horizon until well after midnight on these autumn nights. Paul Douglas, Star Tribune, "A Chilly, Showery Week But 70s In Sight," 27 Sep. 2020

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

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

History and Etymology for horizon

Middle English orizon, from Late Latin horizont-, horizon, from Greek horizont-, horizōn, from present participle of horizein to bound, define, from horos boundary; perhaps akin to Latin urvum curved part of a plow

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Time Traveler for horizon

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for horizon

Last Updated

21 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Horizon.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/horizon. Accessed 23 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for horizon


How to pronounce horizon (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of horizon

: the line where the earth or sea seems to meet the sky
: the limit or range of a person's knowledge, understanding, or experience
: the limit of what is possible in a particular field or activity


ho·​ri·​zon | \ hə-ˈrī-zᵊn How to pronounce horizon (audio) \

Kids Definition of horizon

1 : the line where the earth or sea seems to meet the sky
2 : the limit of a person's outlook or experience Reading broadens our horizons.

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