American English

Definition of civilization noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[uncountable] a state of human society that is very developed and organized the technology of modern civilization The settlers saw themselves as bringing progress and civilization to the wilderness.
  2. 2[uncountable, countable] a society, its culture, and its way of life during a particular period of time or in a particular part of the world the civilizations of ancient Greece and Rome diseases that are common in Western civilization
  3. 3[uncountable] all the people in the world and the societies they live in, considered as a whole Environmental damage threatens the whole of civilization.
  4. 4[uncountable] (often humorous) a place that offers you the comfortable way of life of a modern society It's good to be back in civilization after two weeks in a tent!
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: civilization