serial

adjective
se·ri·al | \ ˈsir-ē-əl \

Definition of serial 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, consisting of, or arranged in a series, rank, or row serial order

2 : appearing in successive parts or numbers a serial story

3 : belonging to a series maturing periodically rather than on a single date serial bonds

4 : of, relating to, or being music based on a series of tones in a chosen pattern without regard for traditional tonality

5a : performing a series of similar acts over a period of time a serial killer

b : occurring in or involving such a series a serial murder

6 : relating to or being a connection in a computer system in which the bits of a byte are transmitted sequentially over a single wire — compare parallel

serial

noun

Definition of serial (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a work appearing (as in a magazine or on television) in parts at intervals

b : one part of a serial work : installment

2 : a publication (such as a newspaper or journal) issued as one of a consecutively numbered and indefinitely continued series

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Other words from serial

Adjective

serially \ˈsir-ē-ə-lē \ adverb

Examples of serial in a Sentence

Adjective

The pictures are numbered and arranged in serial order. Scientists made serial observations over a period of two weeks.

Noun

the university library has a vast collection of serials
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Faid, a serial robber and murder convict, hasn't been seen since leaving the prison near Paris. Lori Hinnant And Alex Turnbull, Fox News, "Escaped French criminal had small team of loyal accomplices," 4 July 2018 Faid, a serial robber and murder convict, hasn’t been seen since leaving the prison near Paris. Alex Turnbull, The Seattle Times, "Escaped French criminal had small team of loyal accomplices," 3 July 2018 Two Baltimore reporters are among those featured in an Investigation Discovery program airing tonight that revisits the hunt for a serial rapist-murderer. David Zurawik, baltimoresun.com, "'Dead of Night' revisits hunt for a serial rapist-murderer in Baltimore," 21 May 2018 In 2004, Charlize Theron won an Oscar for her portrayal of Aileen Wuornos, the Florida serial killer responsible for the deaths of at least seven men. PEOPLE.com, "Serial Killers Who Inspired Haunting Hollywood Portrayals," 12 July 2018 In places like Hollywood, where this type of behavior has been normalized for decades, its not surprising that women who never come into contact with accused serial predators like Bill Cosby still feel the effects. Cara Kelly, USA TODAY, "'Death by a thousand cuts': How minor incidents of harassment create toxic environments for women," 12 June 2018 The role of genetics in the case is well known, but this account reveals for the first time the massive scope, intricate science and sheer doggedness of the effort to catch one of the nation's worst serial predators. Author: Justin Jouvenal, Anchorage Daily News, "To find alleged Golden State Killer, investigators first found his great-great-great grandparents," 1 May 2018 The killings came at a time when the city was reeling from the panic induced by other infamous serial predators. James Queally, latimes.com, "His convictions were overturned; he's in failing health. Will Bobby Joe Maxwell gain freedom in '70s serial killer case?," 23 Apr. 2018 Cosby Show’’ star’s deposition testimony read into the record, handing the prosecution a key victory in its effort to portray the comedian as a serial predator. Michael R. Sisak And Claudia Lauer, BostonGlobe.com, "Jury hears Bill Cosby’s graphic testimony about accuser," 17 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

After the arrest of the East Area Rapist (Golden State Killer) on April 25, 2018, here is a look at other California serial killers and how they were caught. Sam Stanton, sacbee, "No penis photos of East Area Rapist suspect, defense attorney asks in court filing | The Sacramento Bee," 2 May 2018 Since its launch, the publisher has released a number of serials in recent years, including The Witch Who Came in From the Cold, a fantasy spy thriller set during the height of the Cold War. Andrew Liptak, The Verge, "Serial Box is experimenting with super-short fiction with Microfiction Mondays," 28 June 2018 Families stuff themselves at iftar, a communal meal at sundown, then sprawl in front of the set to watch nightly serials known as mosalsalat. The Economist, "Egypt’s bumbling police get their man, at least on television," 31 May 2018 DeAngelo is 72 and appeared in court in a wheelchair – adequately explains a hiatus from serial raping. Marjie Lundstrom And Sam Stanton, sacbee, "Why did the East Area Rapist stop raping and killing? Or did he?," 6 May 2018 Viewers often describe their addictions to these highly dramatic TV serials on Bravo as a guilty pleasure. Garrett Mitchell, azcentral, "Indulge your 'Real Housewives' guilty pleasure at 'Watch What Crappens Live' in Phoenix," 18 June 2018 The character was back two weeks later in a serial. Jeff Suess, Cincinnati.com, "Our history: Fair and square 'Seckatary Hawkins' turns 100," 6 June 2018 In the 1930s, Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon comics and movie theater serials portrayed lasers as weapons decades before a working laser had even been invented. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "How the Military Will Be Revolutionized By Laser Weaponry," 11 Mar. 2016 Although her turn as Lois Lane never made it to the small (or big) screen, Alexander did have the honor of playing Clark Kent’s leading lady on the radio serial The Adventures of Superman, which aired from 1940 to 1951. Grace Gavilanes, PEOPLE.com, "Margot Kidder, Amy Adams & More Strong Women Who Played Lois Lane on Screen," 14 May 2018

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

Adjective

1823, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1834, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Dictionary Entries near serial

Sergipe

sergt

Seri

serial

serial comma

serial homology

serialise

Statistics for serial

Last Updated

14 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for serial

The first known use of serial was in 1823

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More Definitions for serial

serial

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of serial

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: arranged or happening in a series

of a crime : committed many times usually in the same way

of a criminal : committing a series of crimes

serial

noun

English Language Learners Definition of serial (Entry 2 of 2)

: a story that is broadcast on television or radio or that is published in a magazine in separate parts over a period of time

serial

adjective
se·ri·al | \ ˈsir-ē-əl \

Kids Definition of serial

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: arranged in or appearing in parts or numbers that follow a regular order a serial story

serial

noun

Kids Definition of serial (Entry 2 of 2)

: a story appearing (as in a magazine or on television) in parts at regular intervals

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Comments on serial

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