time - definition and synonyms


Your browser doesn’t support HTML5 audio

  1. 1
    [uncountable] the quantity that you measure using a clock

    Time seemed to pass more quickly than before.

    1. a.
      [countable/uncountable] a particular moment during a day, measured on a clock

      What time does the film start?

      What time is it?

      tell the time (=be able to understand what the time is by looking at a clock):

      We’re teaching them how to tell the time.

      at this time of day:

      She won’t be busy at this time of day.

    2. b.
      [uncountable] the time in a particular part of the world

      It was six o’clock in the morning, Pacific Standard Time.

  2. 2
    [countable] a particular amount of time
    a long/short time:

    She thought about it for a long time.

    She left a short time ago.

    a/the length of time:

    There have been improvements in the length of time patients have to wait for treatment.

    1. a.
      [often plural] a period in history

      in the time between the wars

      Not since Roman times had a single nation been so powerful.

      time of:

      It was a time of tremendous political uncertainty.

    2. b.
      a period in someone’s life
      someone’s time as something:

      She thoroughly enjoyed her time as manager.

      someone’s time at something:

      He speaks of his time at university as a happy one.

      an easy/hard time:

      When the kids were young it was a particularly hard time.

  3. 3
    [countable] an occasion
    the time (when) someone does something:

    Do you remember the time we drove the car to Paris?

    the first/second/last etc time:

    It was the first time we’d met.

    (the) next time:

    The next time you need financial advice, come and see me.

    1. a.
      [countable] an experience
      a good/bad time:

      It’s my job to make sure the guests have a good time.

    2. b.
      [countable/uncountable] a moment
      at the/that/this time:

      I was sitting by the window at the time.

      at the time of doing something/at the time you do something:

      You can get travel insurance at the time of booking.

      at the time of writing (=when this article, report etc was written):

      No medical evidence was available at the time of writing.

    3. c.
      [uncountable] a particular point when something happens

      She left the bar a few minutes before closing time.

      time for:

      They said they would call us when it was time for dinner.

      it’s time (that) someone did something/was doing something:

      Isn’t it time the children went to bed?

      It’s time we were leaving.

    4. d.
      [singular] a particular moment that is suitable or not suitable for something

      When would be a good time to discuss it?

      I’m afraid now isn’t a very convenient time for me.

      the right/wrong time:

      Now seemed the right time to make a change.

    5. e.
      [countable] used for saying how often something happens

      Check the temperature two or three times a day.

  4. 4
    [uncountable] the time that is available for something

    She will have less time to spend with family and friends now.

    1. a.
      [countable/uncountable] the amount of time that you need for a particular activity

      Bad weather could add another hour to your journey time.

      We have reduced the delivery time from four days to two.

    2. b.
      [countable] the amount of time that someone takes to finish a race

      She’s cut two seconds off her previous best time.

  5. 5
    [uncountable] music the rhythm of a piece of music, shown as the number of beats in each bar

    a piece in 6–8 time

  6.   From our crowdsourced Open Dictionary
    call time on something stop something

    Gary Neville called time on his playing career at the age of 35.

    Submitted by Boris Marchenko from Russian Federation on 14/05/2017
  7.   From our crowdsourced Open Dictionary
    time's up spoken used to say that there is no more time available to continue doing something

    Alright, everyone, time's up. Please turn in your spelling tests.

    Submitted by Caleb Judy from United States on 12/08/2015