American English

Definition of year noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    (abbreviation yr.)
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  1. 1(also calendar year) [countable] the period from January 1 to December 31, that is 365 or 366 days, divided into 12 months in the year 1865 I lost my job earlier this year. Elections take place every year. The museum is open all year round (= during the whole year). see also leap year, new year
  2. 2[countable] a period of 12 months, measured from any particular time It's exactly a year since I started working here. She gave up teaching three years ago. in the first year of their marriage the prewar/war/postwar years (= the period before/during/after the war) I have happy memories of my years in Paris (= the time I spent there). see also gap year, light year, off year
  3. 3[countable] a period of 12 months connected with a particular activity the academic/school year the tax year see also fiscal year
  4. 4[countable, usually plural] age; time of life He was 14 years old when it happened. She looks young for her years. They were both only 20 years of age. a twenty-year-old man He died in his sixtieth year. She's getting on in years (= is no longer young).
  5. 5years [plural] (informal) a long time It's years since we last met. They haven't seen each other for years. That's the best movie I've seen in years. We've had a lot of fun over the years.
  6. Idioms
    somebody's declining years (literary)
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    the last years of someone's life
    man, woman, car, etc. of the year
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    a person or thing that people decide is the best in a particular field in a particular year She was chosen as mother of the year.
    not/never in a hundred, etc. years (informal)
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    used to emphasize that you will/would never do something I'd never have thought of that in a million years.
    of advanced years, somebody's advanced age
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    used in polite expressions to describe someone as “very old” He was a man of advanced years. (humorous) Even at my advanced age, I still know how to enjoy myself!
    put years on somebody
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    to make someone feel or look older The illness put years on him.
    take years off somebody
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    to make someone feel or look younger That haircut takes years off her.
    the turn of the century/year
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    the time when a new century/year starts It was built at the turn of the century.
    year after year
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    every year for many years People return year after year.
    year by year
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    as the years pass; each year Year by year their affection for each other grew stronger.
    year in, year out
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    every year
    year of grace, year of our Lord (formal)
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    any particular year after the birth of Christ
    (the) year one (informal)
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    a very long time ago I've been going there every summer since the year one.
    year on year
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    (used especially when talking about figures, prices, etc.) each year, compared with the last year Spending has increased year on year. a year-on-year increase in spending
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: year