terminal

adjective
ter·​mi·​nal | \ ˈtərm-nəl, ˈtər-mə-nᵊl\

Definition of terminal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : leading ultimately to death : fatal terminal cancer
(2) : approaching or close to death : being in the final stages of a fatal disease a terminal patient
(3) : of or relating to patients with a terminal illness terminal care
b : of, relating to, or occurring in a term or each term terminal payments
c : extremely or hopelessly severe terminal boredom
2a : of or relating to an end, extremity, boundary, or terminus a terminal pillar
b : growing at the end of a branch or stem a terminal bud
3a : occurring at or constituting the end of a period or series : concluding the terminal moments of life
b : not intended as preparation for further academic work a terminal curriculum

terminal

noun

Definition of terminal (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : either end of a carrier line having facilities for the handling of freight and passengers
b : a freight or passenger station that is central to a considerable area or serves as a junction at any point with other lines
c : a town or city at the end of a carrier line : terminus
2 : a combination of a keyboard and output device (such as a video display unit) by which data can be entered into or output from a computer or electronic communications system
3 : a device attached to the end of a wire or cable or to an electrical apparatus for convenience in making connections
4 : a part that forms the end : extremity, termination
5 : a terminating usually ornamental detail : finial

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Other Words from terminal

Adjective

terminally adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for terminal

Adjective

last, final, terminal, ultimate mean following all others (as in time, order, or importance). last applies to something that comes at the end of a series but does not always imply that the series is completed or stopped. last page of a book last news we had of him final applies to that which definitely closes a series, process, or progress. final day of school terminal may indicate a limit of extension, growth, or development. terminal phase of a disease ultimate implies the last degree or stage of a long process beyond which further progress or change is impossible. the ultimate collapse of the system

Examples of terminal in a Sentence

Adjective

She was diagnosed with terminal cancer. I was suffering from terminal boredom. another person with terminal stupidity branches that end in a terminal bud

Noun

I will meet you outside the bus terminal. Flight 1584 is now departing from Gate 6 in Terminal A. You are not allowed in the terminal without a ticket. Ten terminals are connected to this server. You will need to clean the corrosion off the battery terminals.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

On paper, Kansas City International’s $1.3 billion terminal expansion is fantastic; few things signal a vibrant economy like a shiny, new airport. Marley Marius, Vogue, "A Guide to Kansas City, Missouri: Its History, Its Culture, and Why It’s Worth a Closer Look," 23 Nov. 2018 Although the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates the airport, its six terminals are each managed by separate airlines or terminal operators; as a result, JFK is notorious for a lack of communication or cooperation among the partners. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Facebook employees are outraged by a top exec’s public show of support for Brett Kavanaugh," 5 Oct. 2018 Mandate a 10-year period of marketing exclusivity on treatments for terminal diseases. Paul J. Marangos, WSJ, "The Terminally Ill Need More Than the ‘Right to Try’," 13 Aug. 2018 News reports say that Mrs. Bush is at home in Houston and will not seek treatment for terminal medical conditions, including congestive heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD. Byron Mccauley, Cincinnati.com, "Barbara Bush: That time we spent Mother's Day with the first lady," 17 Apr. 2018 Taylor has terminal cancer and has been given months to live, so his friends started a social media campaign to get Nintendo’s attention. Patricia Hernandez, The Verge, "Nintendo lets terminal cancer patient play Super Smash Bros. Ultimate early," 21 Sep. 2018 On Friday, a California jury hit Monsanto with $289 million in damages in a lawsuit brought by a patient suffering from terminal cancer, accepting the plaintiff's claims that his disease was caused by the company's popular herbicide, Roundup. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Lawsuit brings $289 million verdict against maker of Roundup weed killer," 11 Aug. 2018 His wife was a huge fan of Fixer Upper, and she’d been diagnosed with terminal cancer. Sarah Weinberg, House Beautiful, "What It's like To Live in A Famous "Fixer Upper" House," 9 Aug. 2018 Thanks to Trump Americans facing terminal diagnoses will now have a new chance at life. Fox News, "Morgan Freeman's team accuses CNN of defamation," 31 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Although the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates the airport, its six terminals are each managed by separate airlines or terminal operators; as a result, JFK is notorious for a lack of communication or cooperation among the partners. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Facebook employees are outraged by a top exec’s public show of support for Brett Kavanaugh," 5 Oct. 2018 Beijing Capital, Asia’s busiest passenger airport, runs 68 flights and hour and New York’s JFK features 51 an hour across its six terminals. Tim Newcomb, Popular Mechanics, "This Visualization Shows Just How Busy the World's Biggest Airports Are," 20 Sep. 2018 Wilmington International Airport, too, confirmed that its terminal will be closed through Friday. Janine Puhak, Fox News, "Hurricane Florence: Airports, airlines prepare for storm as thousands of flights delayed or canceled," 13 Sep. 2018 Las Vegas McCarran International Airport has reported power outages affecting its main terminal on Wednesday morning. CBS News, "Las Vegas airport reports major power outage," 13 June 2018 The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates the airport, but has ceded control of each of its six terminals to an airline or other private operator. Patrick Mcgeehan, New York Times, "Report Offers 50 Ways to Avoid the Chaos That Crippled Kennedy Airport," 31 May 2018 Thanks to luck or fate, there was a Kiehl’s boutique in my terminal. Rachel Nussbaum, Glamour, "The Easy Sunburn Treatment That Kept My Skin From Peeling," 29 May 2018 Inside the module folder in your terminal, go ahead and run git diff. Kevin Guebert, Outside Online, "Getting Started with Patches," 22 May 2018 The deal with Somaliland prompted Djibouti to abruptly end DP World’s contract for its Doraleh container terminal in February. Washington Post, "AP Interview: Somaliland president defends UAE military deal," 3 Apr. 2018

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

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3a

Noun

1838, in the meaning defined at sense 4

History and Etymology for terminal

Adjective

Latin terminalis, from terminus

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Statistics for terminal

Last Updated

1 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for terminal

The first known use of terminal was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for terminal

terminal

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of terminal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: causing death eventually : leading finally to death

: having an illness that cannot be cured and that will soon lead to death

: of or relating to patients who have a terminal illness

terminal

noun

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

: a building where buses or trains regularly stop so that passengers can get on and off

: a building at an airport where people get on and off airplanes

: a computer or a combination of a keyboard and a video display that is connected to a system and used for entering or receiving data

terminal

adjective
ter·​mi·​nal | \ ˈtər-mə-nᵊl \

Kids Definition of terminal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: relating to or forming an end branches with terminal buds

terminal

noun

Kids Definition of terminal (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : either end of a transportation line or a passenger or freight station located at it the bus terminal
2 : a device (as in a computer system) used to put in, receive, and display information He typed his request into the terminal.
3 : a device at the end of a wire or on a machine for making an electrical connection

terminal

adjective
ter·​mi·​nal | \ ˈtərm-nəl, -ən-ᵊl \

Medical Definition of terminal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or being at an end, extremity, boundary, or terminus the terminal phalanx of a finger
2a : leading ultimately to death : fatal terminal cancer
b : approaching or close to death : being in the final stages of a fatal disease a terminal patient
c : of or relating to patients with a terminal illness terminal care
3 : being at or near the end of a chain of atoms making up a molecule the terminal carbon

Other Words from terminal

terminally \ -​ē \ adverb

terminal

noun

Medical Definition of terminal (Entry 2 of 2)

: a part that forms an end especially : nerve ending synthesis of a neurotransmitter in the presynaptic terminal of a neuron — R. J. Wurtman

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Comments on terminal

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