ancient - definition in the British English Dictionary & Thesaurus - Cambridge Dictionaries Online (US)

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ancient

adjective uk   us   /ˈeɪn.ʃənt/
B1 of or from a long time ago, having lasted for a very long time: ancient civilizations/rights/laws ancient monuments/ruins/woodlands the ancient kingdoms of Mexico People have lived in this valley since ancient times. History, ancient and modern, has taught these people an intense distrust of their neighbours. informal very old: He's got an ancient laptop.B1 used to refer to the period in European history from the earliest known societies to the end of the Roman Empire: the ancient Egyptians/Greeks/Romans The ancient Britons inhabited these parts of England before the Roman invasion.
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(Definition of ancient from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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