Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

recess - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



Thesaurus diagram

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

noun     recess pronunciation in British English
/rɪˈses/    recess pronunciation in British English
Word Forms

Related words

  1. 1
    [countable/uncountable] a short time between periods of work in an official organization, especially a court or parliament

    Parliament returns from its summer recess next week.

    1. a.
      American a period between school lessons when students can eat, rest, or play. The British word is break.
  2. 2
    [countable] a space in a room where part of a wall is further back than the rest of it

Open Dictionary


a rise in the level of a stream or river

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog
Macmillan learn live love play