Meaning of “continent” in the English Dictionary

"continent" in British English

See all translations

continentnoun [ C ]

uk /ˈkɒn.tɪ.nənt/ us /ˈkɑːn.t̬ən.ənt/

B1 one of the seven large land masses on the earth's surface, surrounded, or mainly surrounded, by sea and usually consisting of various countries:

the North American continent
the continents of Asia and Africa

More examples

  • Stanley traversed the African continent from west to east.
  • You can't generalize about a continent as varied as Europe.
  • The continents make up about 35% of the earth's crust.
  • He decided to cycle across the continent to raise money for charity.
  • The continents were once all part of one huge supercontinent.
adjective uk /ˌkɒn.tɪˈnen.təl/ us /ˌkɑːn.t̬ənˈen.t̬əl/


continental waters


uk /ˈkɒn.tɪ.nənt/ us /ˈkɑːn.t̬ən.ənt/

the Continentnoun [ S ]

uk /ˈkɒn.tɪ.nənt/ us /ˈkɑːn.t̬ən.ənt/ mainly UK
adjective also continental uk /ˌkɒn.tɪˈnen.təl/ us /ˌkɑːn.t̬ənˈen.t̬əl/

She preferred the continental way of life.
noun [ C ] also continental uk /ˌkɒn.tɪˈnen.təl/ us /ˌkɑːn.t̬ənˈen.t̬əl/ mainly UK old-fashioned

someone who comes from Europe but not the British Isles

(Definition of “continent” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"continent" in American English

See all translations

continentnoun [ C ]

us /ˈkɑn·tən·ənt, -tə·nənt/

one of the seven large land masses on the earth’s surface, surrounded or mainly surrounded by sea:

Asia and Africa are the two biggest continents.
adjective [ not gradable ] us /ˌkɑn·tənˈen·təl, -təˈnen-/

(Definition of “continent” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"continent" in Business English

See all translations


uk /ˈkɒntɪnənt/ us

[ C ] one of the seven large land masses on the Earth's surface:

The company has production plants in every continent except Australia.
the Continent UK old-fashioned

Europe, especially Western Europe, but not including the British Isles:

Many of the jobs will be lost, not in Britain, but in branches on the Continent.

continental countries/Europe/markets 40% of the company's investors and its deals come from continental Europe.

(Definition of “continent” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)