split-second

adjective
split-sec·​ond | \ˈsplit-ˈse-kənd \

Definition of split-second 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : occurring in a split second a split-second decision

2 : extremely precise split-second timing

split second

noun

Definition of split second (Entry 2 of 2)

: a fractional part of a second : flash

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of split-second in a Sentence

Noun

In a split second, it was all over. a devastating accident can cause everything in your life to change in a split second

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Fans learned quickly not to get too attached to characters, because Martin doesn't hesitate to kill off characters who feel like vital protagonists in a split second. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "George R.R. Martin Finally Explained Why He Keeps Killing All Your Favorite 'Game of Thrones' Characters," 12 Aug. 2018 That split second, Ballard said, will create problems in the pros. Stephen Holder, Indianapolis Star, "Insider: Colts' Chris Ballard breaks down film on picks from NFL Draft," 1 May 2018 That split second where the game that looks to be ebbing towards a natural, premeditated end gets flipped on it's head, with the remainder of the match plunged into ambiguity is unprecedented in terms of entertainment. SI.com, "6 Teams That Had Victory Snatched From Them at the Death," 18 June 2018 Two men, apparently civilians, were walking into the area just meters (yards) from the motorcycles at the moment of the explosion, which a split second later was followed by a second possible blast. Washington Post, "Police: Indonesia suicide bombings work of 2 families," 15 May 2018 Fans simply saw a great play lasting a split second or two. John Shea, SFChronicle.com, "Brandon Crawford’s All-Star journey: From family tragedy to national spotlight," 12 July 2018 For a split second, I was confused, then saw my body and red board shorts marinating in a cloud of blood. Patty Hodapp, Outside Online, "The Man Who Survived a Rattler, Bear, and Shark Attack," 10 July 2018 Within a split second, one of the dogs, Dwight, a 55-pound rescue, panicked, squeezed through a gate slat and tore off toward Jefferson Avenue. Christina Hall, Detroit Free Press, "Dog found covered in blood, urine and feces after fleeing fireworks," 2 July 2018 Two men, apparently civilians, were walking into the area just meters (yards) from the motorcycles at the moment of the explosion, which a split second later was followed by a second possible blast. Washington Post, "Police: Indonesia suicide bombings work of 2 families," 15 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'split-second.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of split-second

Adjective

1944, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1912, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about split-second

Share split-second

Statistics for split-second

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for split-second

The first known use of split-second was in 1912

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for split-second

split-second

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of split-second

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: done very quickly

: very accurate or precise

split second

noun

English Language Learners Definition of split second (Entry 2 of 2)

: a very short period of time

More from Merriam-Webster on split-second

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with split-second

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for split-second

Comments on split-second

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to make faulty or ineffective

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!