Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “period”

See all translations

period

noun [C]  /ˈpɪər·i·əd/ us  

period noun [C] (TIME)

a length of time: The study will be carried out over a six-month period. A period in the life of a person or in history is a particular time during that life or history: The period after World War II was marked by rapid economic growth. A period is a division of time in an event of fixed length, such as a day at school or a game: There was no scoring in the second period. physics A period is the time it takes for one complete repetition of a pattern that repeats. A second is used as the standard unit in most areas of science. Period costume/dress/furniture is the clothing or furniture of a particular time in history: At the Revolutionary War theme park, everyone was wearing period costumes.

period noun [C] (MARK)

a mark (.) used in writing to show where the end of a sentence is, or to show that the letters before it are an abbreviation (= short word form) infml You can say period at the end of a statement as a way of adding emphasis: There will be no more shouting, period!

period noun [C] (BLEEDING)

( also menstrual period,  /ˈmen·strəlˌpɪr·i·əd, -strə·wəl-/) the bleeding from a woman’s uterus that happens approximately every four weeks when she is not pregnant

period noun [C] (REPEATED EVENT)

period noun [C] (ROW)

chemistry any of the rows in the periodic table of chemical elements
(Definition of period from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of period?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

More American English definitions for “period”

Definitions of “period” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

be as cold as ice

to be extremely cold

Word of the Day

Cleavage proves divisive in Cambridge’s words of 2014

by Alastair Horne,
December 19, 2014
​​​​ Other dictionaries may choose faddish novelties as their words of the year, but here at Cambridge, we like to do something different. We look for the words that have seen sudden surges in searches over the course of the year – words that have been baffling users of English and driven them

Read More 

cinderella surgery noun

December 15, 2014
cosmetic surgery to the feet We have all heard of people having nose jobs, boob jobs and liposuction – but now a new trend growing in popularity in America: Cinderella surgery.

Read More