terminal

adjective
ter·​mi·​nal | \ ˈtərm-nəl How to pronounce terminal (audio) , 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

That week the conservative columnist and Pulitzer Prize winner Charles Krauthammer announced his cancer had spread and was terminal. Mattie Kahn, Glamour, "Meghan McCain Isn’t Afraid of a Fight," 2 Aug. 2018 For patients like me, the goal is for our cancer to be chronic, not terminal. Woman's Day, "Why Kathy Townsend Doesn't Let Her Breast Cancer Diagnosis Stop Her From Living," 9 July 2018 But on the final day of session, known in Annapolis by the Latin phrase sine die, any delay can be terminal. Michael Dresser, baltimoresun.com, "Crime, guns are among unresolved issues on final day of Maryland's legislative session," 9 Apr. 2018 Ward asked the crowd during one of her rallies on Friday, just hours after McCain’s office announced he would be stopping treatment for terminal brain cancer. Li Zhou, Vox, "“McCain in a skirt”: Republicans are looking to the establishment to save a Senate seat in Arizona," 28 Aug. 2018 Lauren Hill, the Mount Saint Joseph University basketball player, who died in 2015 from terminal brain cancer, will be inducted into the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame in 2019. Paulina Dedaj, Fox News, "Lauren Hill to be inducted into Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame 3 years after brain cancer death," 9 Aug. 2018 A few years ago, the mother-in-law of Zhang Li (who asked that, to spare her family, her real name not be used) was diagnosed with terminal bladder cancer. The Economist, "Taboos make it hard to discuss mortality in China," 7 June 2018 The 81-year-old, who revealed this year that he'd been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, is interviewed throughout the film, as are his family and some of his bitterest political rivals. Lorraine Ali, latimes.com, "HBO’s ‘John McCain: For Whom the Bell Tolls’ is as candid as the maverick himself," 27 May 2018 Those goals typically include keeping someone with a terminal illness comfortable in their own space or providing a comprehensive care community when at-home support is no longer enough, but with some nuances depending on the specific situation. Korin Miller, SELF, "6 Different End-of-Life Care Options to Know if You or a Loved One Is Sick," 18 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Somewhere behind a Bloomberg terminal, there’s a dude clutching the lapels of his Patagonia fleece vest. Brooke Bobb, Vogue, "The Anonymous Instagrammer Midtown Uniform Reacts to Patagonia’s New Anti–Finance Bro Agenda," 3 Apr. 2019 And yet, last August Enterprise Products Partners announced plans to build such a massive offshore oil-exporting terminal south of Galveston. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "America's New Energy Coast," 19 Mar. 2019 The train system serves 14 mines that deliver to four port terminals. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "Mining co. says first autonomous freight train network fully operational," 30 Dec. 2018 She was seen exiting the terminal in a bomber jacket, white shirt, and a pleated midi skirt by Misha Nonoo. Marina Liao, Marie Claire, "Princess Beatrice Takes Uber From LAX After a Flight From London to Los Angeles," 19 Nov. 2018 Another way cruises turn a large profit is by investing in port terminals. Aditi Shrikant, Vox, "The case against cruises," 15 Nov. 2018 Construction, which includes two large international terminals and all mod cons, is expected to begin in 2020 and be completed by 2025. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Facebook employees are outraged by a top exec’s public show of support for Brett Kavanaugh," 5 Oct. 2018 Dominion Energy of Richmond, Va., also began exporting LNG from a terminal in Maryland in March. James Osborne And Katherine Blunt, San Antonio Express-News, "Cheniere, CME edge toward a benchmark; Analyst says they’re working toward LNG commoditization," 11 July 2018 Contracts awarded to his container terminals in West Africa are part of the probe, a person familiar with the matter told Bloomberg. Thomas Seal, Bloomberg.com, "Ports, Cinemas and Palm Oil: Vincent Bollore's African Holdings," 25 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

13 Mar 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 How to pronounce terminal (audio) \

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 How to pronounce terminal (audio) \

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 How to pronounce terminally (audio) \ 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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