term

noun
\ ˈtərm How to pronounce term (audio) \

Definition of term

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a word or expression that has a precise meaning in some uses or is peculiar to a science, art, profession, or subject legal terms
b terms plural : expression of a specified kind described in glowing terms
2a : a limited or definite extent of time especially : the time for which something lasts : duration, tenure term of office lost money in the short term
b : the whole period for which an estate is granted also : the estate or interest held by one for a term
c : the time during which a court is in session
3 : division in a school year during which instruction is regularly given to students
4 terms plural : provisions that determine the nature and scope of an agreement : conditions terms of sale liberal credit terms
5 terms plural
a : mutual relationship : footing on good terms
b : agreement, concord come to terms after extensive negotiations
c : a state of acceptance or understanding came to terms with the failure of his marriage
6a : the time at which a pregnancy of normal length terminates had her baby at full term
b : end, termination also : a point in time assigned to something (such as a payment)
7a : a unitary or compound expression connected with another by a plus or minus sign
b : an element of a fraction or proportion or of a series or sequence
8 : any of the three substantive elements of a syllogism
9 : a quadrangular pillar often tapering downward and adorned on the top with the figure of a head or the upper part of the body
in terms of
: with respect to or in relation to thinks of everything in terms of money
on one's own terms
: in accordance with one's wishes : in one's own way prefers to live on his own terms

term

verb
termed; terming; terms

Definition of term (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to apply a term to : call, name

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Synonyms for term

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of term in a Sentence

Noun “I had the feeling that I had been there before.” “The term for that is ‘déjà vu.’” That's an outdated term that no one uses anymore. He spoke about them in glowing terms. The law had been understood in broad terms. The governor will run for a second term. He is currently serving his third term in the U.S. Senate. He was sentenced to a ten-year term in the state penitentiary. The term of the contract is 60 months. His grades have improved since last term. English 122 is not offered this term. Verb They termed the structure a “double helix.” The project was termed a success.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The City Council was split on how to fill the remaining months of Weber’s term, which expires in November 2022. San Diego Union-Tribune, "La Mesa making plans to replace former Councilwoman Akilah Weber," 29 Apr. 2021 Trump’s term to get rid of Obama administration policies. Sarah D. Wire, Los Angeles Times, "Senate votes to repeal a Trump-era methane rule. What does it mean?," 28 Apr. 2021 That’s on top of a 100-year sentence, an effective life term, that Titus Miller, 28, already is serving on federal charges for making child pornography involving the same allegations. Lori Pilger Lincoln Journal Star, al, "Nebraska man made sexually explicit videos at child care center, sent them to Alabama man, going to prison," 27 Apr. 2021 Lawmakers from López Obrador’s party have triggered outrage by voting to add two years to the four-year term of the Supreme Court chief justice, Arturo Zaldívar. Washington Post, "López Obrador’s bid to alter Mexican Supreme Court seen as threat to judicial independence," 27 Apr. 2021 Health care organizations were concerned about language in the bill that says employers can’t discriminate against a person in a term, condition or privilege of employment based on the person’s vaccination status. Amy Beth Hansen, chicagotribune.com, "Montana bill would ban employers from requiring COVID-19 vaccine," 27 Apr. 2021 The economist conducting the interview repeatedly suggested Zarif should run for president as Rouhani is now term-limited from running again. Jon Gambrell, USA TODAY, "Iran's top diplomat speaks bluntly on nuclear deal, Gen. Qassam Soleimani in leaked recording," 26 Apr. 2021 The economist conducting the interview repeatedly suggested Zarif should run for president as Rouhani is now term-limited from running again. BostonGlobe.com, "Leaked recording of Iran’s top diplomat offers blunt talk," 26 Apr. 2021 With its new six-member conservative majority, the court has displayed overwhelming unity so far in cases argued and decided this term, which began in October 2020. Devin Dwyer, ABC News, "Vaccinated justices pose for Supreme Court photo with new Justice Barrett," 23 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb It’s that experienced depth that has caused head coach Kane Wommack to term the defensive line the leaders of the South Alabama defense. Creg Stephenson | Cstephenson@al.com, al, "Gi’Narious Johnson brings strength, versatility to South Alabama defensive line," 9 Apr. 2021 The Lions are in a state of rebuild, no matter how Holmes wants to term it, and the only way to do that properly is to tear the organization down to its studs. Dave Birkett, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Lions, Matthew Stafford seek fresh start via trade: How it came to this," 24 Jan. 2021 At the same time, Gov. Jerry Brown was set to term out in 2018. Phil Matier, SFChronicle.com, "Gavin Newsom made it easy for Kamala Harris to decide which higher office to pursue," 3 Nov. 2020 Bill Clinton, whose career was frequently likened to McKay’s, had been president for six desultory years of what is now termed neoliberalism. Kyle Smith, National Review, "Two Movies That Define Today’s Democrats," 11 Mar. 2020 By the end of it, 19 Indian jawans were killed and about 30 were injured in what was termed the deadliest attack on Indian security forces in Kashmir in nearly two and a half decades. Nikhil Inamdar, Quartz India, "An Indian startup’s “sharp-eye” technology can prevent Uri-like militant attacks," 15 Jan. 2020 Previously, refunds were only available to games that were canceled, but games not played in March and April were officially termed postponed by MLB. Los Angeles Times, "Dodgers offer refunds or credit to ticket holders for home games in March, April," 30 Apr. 2020 Kliff Kingsbury certainly looked relaxed in his James Bond-style living space, termed that by the brilliant Nora Princiotti of the Boston Globe. Jeremy Cluff, azcentral, "NFL power rankings: Arizona Cardinals a Top 10 team after 2020 NFL draft?," 28 Apr. 2020 It was reported yesterday, however, that he has been reassigned in a move the report termed sudden. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Head of US’ pandemic vaccine group says he was demoted in retaliation," 22 Apr. 2020

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

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 6b

Verb

1545, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for term

Noun

Middle English terme, from Anglo-French, from Latin terminus boundary marker, limit; akin to Greek termōn boundary, end, Sanskrit tarman top of a post

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Time Traveler for term

Time Traveler

The first known use of term was in the 13th century

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Statistics for term

Last Updated

2 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Term.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/term. Accessed 11 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for term

term

noun

English Language Learners Definition of term

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a word or phrase that has an exact meaning
: the particular kinds of words used to describe someone or something
: the length of time during which a person has an official or political office

term

verb

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

: to give a particular name or description to (something) : to call (something) by a particular name or to describe (something) in a particular way

term

noun
\ ˈtərm How to pronounce term (audio) \

Kids Definition of term

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a word or expression that has an exact meaning in some uses or is limited to a subject or field legal terms
2 : a period of time fixed especially by law or custom a school term
3 terms plural : conditions that limit the nature and scope of something (as a treaty or a will) the terms of a contract
4 terms plural : relationship between people I'm on good terms with the neighbors.
5 : any one of the numbers in a series
6 : the numerator or denominator of a fraction

term

verb
termed; terming

Kids Definition of term (Entry 2 of 2)

: to call by a particular name “… it pleases him to be termed Emperor rather than King.”— L. Frank Baum, The Marvelous Land of Oz

term

noun
\ ˈtərm How to pronounce term (audio) \

Medical Definition of term

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the time at which a pregnancy of normal length terminates had her baby at full term

term

adjective

Medical Definition of term (Entry 2 of 2)

: carried to, occurring at, or associated with full term a term infant term births

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term

noun, often attributive

Legal Definition of term

1 : a specified period of time the policy term
2 : the whole period for which an estate is granted also : the estate itself
3a : the period in which the powers of a court may be validly exercised
b : session
4 : a word, phrase, or provision of import especially in determining the nature and scope of an agreement usually used in pl. the terms of the contract

Comments on term

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