American English

Definition of period noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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    length of time
  1. 1a particular length of time a period of consultation/mourning/uncertainty The factory will be closed down over a 2-year period/a period of two years. This compares with a 4% increase for the same period last year. This offer is available for a limited period only. All these changes happened over a period of time. The aim is to reduce traffic at peak periods. You can have it for a trial period (= in order to test it). The project will run for a six-month trial period. Tomorrow will be cold with sunny periods. see also cooling-off period
  2. 2a length of time in the life of a particular person or in the history of a particular country What period of history would you most like to have lived in? the post-war period The church dates from the Norman period. Like Picasso, she too had a blue period. Most teenagers go through a period of rebelling.
  3. 3(geology) a length of time that is a division of an era. A period is divided into epochs the Jurassic period
  4. lesson
  5. 4any of the parts that a day is divided into at a school, college, etc. for study “What do you have next period?” “French.” a free/study period (= for private study)
  6. woman
  7. 5the flow of blood each month from the body of a woman who is not pregnant period pains monthly periods When did you last have a period? compare menstruation
  8. punctuation
  9. 6the mark ( . ) used at the end of a sentence and in some abbreviations, for example e.g.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: period