qua·​dren·​ni·​al | \ kwä-ˈdre-nē-əl How to pronounce quadrennial (audio) \

Definition of quadrennial

1 : consisting of or lasting for four years
2 : occurring or being done every four years

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Other Words from quadrennial

quadrennial noun
quadrennially \ kwä-​ˈdre-​nē-​ə-​lē How to pronounce quadrennial (audio) \ adverb

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Most things quadrennial occur every four years (that's the more common use). We can say, for example, that the U.S. presidential election is a quadrennial event. But we can also say that president's term in office is quadrennial, making good use of the "lasting four years" sense. The Latin combining form quadri- adds a factor of four to many English words: quadriceps (the thigh muscle, which has four parts), quadrilateral (a four-sided polygon), quadragenarian (a person in his or her 40s), and quadricentennial (a 400th anniversary), to name a few. The -ennial part of quadrennial has the same root as in biennial and centennial; all trace back to annus, the Latin word for "year."

Examples of quadrennial in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The discovery of the crack came just a couple of months after the American Society of Civil Engineers, America’s leading engineering professional group, gave the United States a miserable C-minus on its quadrennial infrastructure report card. Washington Post, 14 May 2021 That would mean more than a dozen players on both squads potentially being ruled out of preparations for the European Championship, the quadrennial continent soccer championship, which begins June 11. New York Times, 9 May 2021 First, Alabama is due for its quadrennial purge, which follows every presidential election. Kyle Whitmire, al, 18 Apr. 2021 And attendance was capped at roughly 100, a fraction of the media horde that usually descends on these quadrennial events. Todd J. Gillman, Dallas News, 30 Sep. 2020 Parties traditionally beg news outlets to cover as much of the quadrennial events as possible, Goeas reminded the Washington Examiner. Naomi Lim, Washington Examiner, 3 Aug. 2020 Scientific governance is not a traditional strong suit of USGCRP, which is most well known for producing the quadrennial National Climate Assessment. Paul Voosen, Science | AAAS, 25 Mar. 2021 Some of the traditional trappings of the quadrennial ceremony will remain. Jonathan Lemire, BostonGlobe.com, 20 Jan. 2021 A few weeks later, the Olympics would postpone their quadrennial games. NBC News, 7 Mar. 2021

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

circa 1656, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of quadrennial was circa 1656

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Last Updated

23 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Quadrennial.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quadrennial. Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

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