late

adjective
\ˈlāt \
later; latest

Definition of late 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : coming or remaining after the due, usual, or proper time a late spring was late for class

(2) : of, relating to, or imposed because of tardiness had to pay a late fee

b(1) : of or relating to an advanced stage in point of time or development : occurring near the end of a period of time or series the late Middle Ages

(2) : far advanced toward the close of the day or night late hours

2a : living comparatively recently : now deceased used of persons the late John Doe and often with reference to a specific relationship or status his late wife

b : being something or holding some position or relationship recently but not now the late belligerents

c : made, appearing, or happening just previous to the present time especially as the most recent of a succession our late quarrel

late

adverb
later; latest

Definition of late (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : after the usual or proper time got to work late

b : at or to an advanced point of time

2 : not long ago : recently a writer late of Chicago

of late

: in the period shortly or immediately preceding : recently has been sick of late

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Other Words from late

Adjective

lateness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for late

Adjective

dead, defunct, deceased, departed, late mean devoid of life. dead applies literally to what is deprived of vital force but is used figuratively of anything that has lost any attribute (such as energy, activity, radiance) suggesting life. a dead, listless performance defunct stresses cessation of active existence or operation. a defunct television series deceased, departed, and late apply to persons who have died recently. deceased is the preferred term in legal use. the estate of the deceased departed is used usually as a euphemism. our departed sister late is used especially with reference to a person in a specific relation or status. the company's late president

Examples of late in a Sentence

Adjective

It happened in late spring. a word first recorded in the late 17th century We had a late spring this year. Hurry up or we'll be late for school. Their warning was too late to help him. I've always been a late riser. He made a donation to the school in memory of his late wife.

Adverb

Late in the year he became ill. It rained late in the day. Late in his career he moved to the city. a word first recorded late in the 17th century They were trailing by a touchdown late in the fourth quarter. The package should be arriving late next week. He sent in his job application late. They arrived too late for breakfast. I like getting up late. The package arrived late, but better late than never!
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

But this new discovery is the latest in a series of finds in the last few decades, as researchers have been looking further into the city’s past. Abigail Abrams, Time, "A Mysterious Sarcophagus That May Not Have Been Opened in 2,000 Years Was Found in Egypt," 14 July 2018 Better Half would be the latest in a wave of brewpubs and craft beer taprooms that are opening across the state. Don Stacom, Courant Community, "New Brewery Looks to Offer Craft Beer In Bristol By End of 2018," 13 July 2018 This episode was the latest in an increasingly chilling narrative. Krista Stevens, Longreads, "Accountability for the Algorithms," 13 July 2018 The latest automaker to promise an electric car that's excessively fast, luxurious, rare, and expensive, is Pininfarina-Automobili. Jack Stewart, WIRED, "Pininfarina's Back With a $2 Million Electric Hypercar," 14 July 2018 The party’s latest target, the Supreme Court, is tasked with validating election results. Kristen Chick, The Christian Science Monitor, "By staying on the job, Poland's top judge fights the right-wing government," 13 July 2018 The latest Cabinet casualty was Environmental Protection Agency head Scott Pruitt, who resigned this month amid ethics investigations. CBS News, "Government watchdog slams former HHS head for travel," 13 July 2018 The writer-director's latest, Skyscraper, stars his Central Intelligence collaborator Dwayne Johnson as former FBI agent and war veteran Will Sawyer, who lost part of his leg after a hostage situation gone wrong. Aaron Couch, The Hollywood Reporter, "Why 'Skyscraper' Director Will Never Make a Sequel to His Cult Classic 'Dodgeball'," 13 July 2018 Today’s latest, and almost certainly not last, indictments in the Russia scandal concern 12 Russian intelligence figures. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "Mueller’s New Indictment Points to Collusion With Russia," 13 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

Shawaryn, Boston’s No. 10 prospect according to MLB.com, isn’t exactly trying to see Sale’s grip on his slider, or how Verlander runs his velocity up late into games. Shawn Mcfarland, courant.com, "Red Sox Prospect Mike Shawaryn Takes A Mental Approach To The Game," 11 July 2018 One former Thai Navy diver died after running out of air late on Thursday. Jake Maxwell Watts, WSJ, "Thailand Cave Rescue: Worsening Air Quality Adds to Pressure for Swift Solution," 7 July 2018 Complete the sentence: Woke up like this: Disheveled, running late, doing too many things at once and underperforming all of them; but pretty thrilled about mediocrity! Heran Mamo, Billboard, "Every Photo Justin Timberlake & Jessica Biel Have Shared of Son Silas," 6 July 2018 The community is set to commemorate its bicentennial with an all-day series of events starting at 7 a.m. and running until late in the evening. Justin Reutter, Cincinnati.com, "Cleves gearing up to celebrate its 200th birthday," 3 July 2018 Additionally, his talent agency and publicist stopped representing him, and he was scrubbed from scenes of the movie All the Money in the World late in its production process. Glenn Fleishman, Fortune, "Kevin Spacey Accused of 3 New Sexual Assaults in London Area," 3 July 2018 For 800 or so children, that city’s newfound commitment to protecting the health of those in public housing may be too little, too late. Anne Branigin, The Root, "New York City Finally Admits that More than 800 Kids Living in Public Housing Tested High for Lead," 2 July 2018 But his deposition at the Pettit & Martin law firm was running late. Rachel Swan, SFChronicle.com, "Woman recalls death of husband on 25th anniversary of SF mass shooting," 1 July 2018 The train finally began operating again around 1:20 p.m. and is currently running more than two hours late, MBTA commuter rail officials tweeted. Elise Takahama, BostonGlobe.com, "One person killed in Lawrence after being hit by commuter rail train," 29 June 2018

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

Adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

Adverb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for late

Adjective

Middle English, late, slow, from Old English læt; akin to Old High German laz slow, Old English lǣtan to let

Adverb

see late entry 1

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Statistics for late

Last Updated

23 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for late

The first known use of late was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for late

late

adverb

English Language Learners Definition of late

: at or near the end of a period of time or a process, activity, series, etc.

: after the usual or expected time

late

adjective
\ˈlāt \
later; latest

Kids Definition of late

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : coming or occurring after the usual or proper time a late spring

2 : coming or occurring toward the end He married in his late twenties.

3 : having died or recently left a certain position the late president

4 : recent sense 2 a late discovery

Other Words from late

lateness noun Do you realize the lateness of the hour?

late

adverb
later; latest

Kids Definition of late (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : after the usual or proper time We arrived late.

2 : near the end of something We'll see you late next week.

of late

: lately I have not seen him of late.

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Comments on late

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