om·​ni·​bus | \ ˈäm-ni-(ˌ)bəs How to pronounce omnibus (audio) \

Definition of omnibus

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a usually automotive public vehicle designed to carry a large number of passengers : bus took a seat on the omnibus
2 : a book containing reprints of a number of works (as of a single author or on a single subject) The omnibus contained all of the author's short stories.



Definition of omnibus (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or providing for many things at once
2 : containing or including many items an omnibus bill

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Did You Know?


The adjective "omnibus" may not have much to do with public transportation, but the noun "omnibus" certainly does - it not only means "bus,"but it's also the word English speakers shortened to form "bus." The noun "omnibus" originated in the 1820s as a French word for long, horse-drawn vehicles that transported people along the main thoroughfares of Paris. Shortly thereafter, omnibuses - and the noun "omnibus" - arrived in New York. But in Latin, "omnibus" simply means "for all." Our adjective "omnibus," which arrived in the mid-1800s, seems to hark back to that Latin omnibus, though it may also have been at least partially influenced by the English noun. An "omnibus bill" containing numerous provisions, for example, could be likened to a bus loaded with people.

Examples of omnibus in a Sentence


an omnibus edition of his more popular stories the president's state of the union speech is usually an omnibus look at the issues that the country is confronting

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

This particular omnibus, starting off with the can-be-read-as-standalone novel The Pride of Chanur and continuing with the next two books in the series, is far and away my favorite of her works and shows Cherryh at the absolute top of her game. Ars Staff, Ars Technica, "How to review your life’s Amazon buying history—and what we learned from our own," 28 May 2018 And so the omnibus left the station sans a reform package. Madeleine Aggeler, The Cut, "Male GOP Senators Are Dragging Their Feet on New Sexual-Harassment Rules," 19 Apr. 2018 Congress showed its disdain for climate programs elsewhere in the omnibus, too. Jean Chemnick, Scientific American, "2018 Budget A Mixed Bag for International Environmental Funding," 9 Apr. 2018 Hurd also touched on the funding for election security grants included in the omnibus, citing the importance of preventing Russia from again meddling in U.S. elections. Jasper Scherer, San Antonio Express-News, "Hurd talks DACA fix, spending bill, election security at chamber luncheon," 29 Mar. 2018 Republicans in good faith took his direction on the omnibus. Andrew Malcolm, San Francisco Chronicle, "Trump’s budget double-dealing may come back to bite him," 28 Mar. 2018 The omnibus also included major extra funding in the bill for the nation's ongoing opioid addiction epidemic, totaling more that $4.65 billion across the federal government — $3 billion more than fiscal year 2017 spending. Erica Martinson, Anchorage Daily News, "The big federal spending bill: what’s in it for Alaska (and what isn’t)," 23 Mar. 2018 Anyone who votes for the omnibus is voting for the deportation of Dreamers and other immigrants., "Senate Passes $1.3 Trillion Spending Bill To Avoid Third Government Shutdown This Year," 23 Mar. 2018 Other issues that sparked less overt controversy are also addressed in the omnibus: The National Institutes of Health get a $3 billion funding increase. Dylan Matthews, Vox, "Congress’s new $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill, explained," 22 Mar. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The omnibus hearing for Deputy Brian Krook, 31, of Somerset Township, Wis., will be 1:30 p.m. Sept. 30 in Washington County District Court in Stillwater. Mary Divine, Twin Cities, "Hearing set for Washington County deputy who shot reportedly suicidal EMT," 26 July 2019 To what degree can any pope change quod ubique, quod semper, quod ab omnibus creditum est — that which has been believed always, everywhere, and by everyone? John Hirschauer, National Review, "What Is Pope Francis Saying about Communion?," 10 June 2019 Trump has talked up a trade pact with a post-Brexit Britain from the start of his presidency, often putting May in a tricky spot, since Britain cannot fully negotiate a deal while still a part of omnibus European Union trade arrangements. Anchorage Daily News, "Trump dismisses London protests, says he would have sued EU over Brexit," 4 June 2019 For 20 years, all the energy and resources has been focused on passing one omnibus bill. Tara Golshan, Vox, "The 2020 Democratic immigration debate, explained," 29 July 2019 These are just some of the many measures in an omnibus borrowing bill the governor periodically submits to the state Legislature. Aidan Ryan,, "Governor Baker calls for $18b boost in transit, road funding," 25 July 2019 Henry Wessinger, president of nonprofit advocacy group State of Safety Action, which backs the proposal, said safe gun storage requirements were part of the omnibus gun bill that Democrats killed in the 2019 Legislature to end a Republican walkout., "Initiative would require Oregon gun owners lock guns, be liable for damages," 19 July 2019 All projects in the public works omnibus bill are set to begin in July 2020 or later. Robin Goist,, "Akron City Council approves $19 million in public works projects," 9 July 2019 Meanwhile, the farm bill — the federal omnibus legislation that President Trump signed into law last week — also contained some modest wins for animals and animal rights groups. Kelsey Piper, Vox, "2018’s big wins — and big losses — for animals," 24 Dec. 2018

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


1829, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1842, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for omnibus

Noun and Adjective

French, from Latin, for all, dative plural of omnis

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Last Updated

24 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for omnibus

The first known use of omnibus was in 1829

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English Language Learners Definition of omnibus

US : of, relating to, or including many things


om·​ni·​bus | \ ˈäm-ni-ˌbəs How to pronounce omnibus (audio) \
plural omnibuses

Kids Definition of omnibus

: bus

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More from Merriam-Webster on omnibus

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with omnibus

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for omnibus

Britannica English: Translation of omnibus for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about omnibus

Comments on omnibus

What made you want to look up omnibus? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to spread over or through

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