second Definition in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo
Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

Definition of “second” - English Dictionary

"second" in American English

See all translations

secondadjective, adverb, noun [C]

 us   /ˈsek·ənd/
  • second adjective, adverb, noun [C] (POSITION)

(a person or thing) coming immediately after the first: He missed only 2 of 11 shots in the second half. [C] Rent is due the second of every month.
secondly
adverb [not gradable]  us   /ˈsek·ənd·li/ (also second)
First, what does it cost? And secondly, who’s it for?

secondnoun [C]

 us   /ˈsek·ənd/ (short form sec)
  • second noun [C] (TIME)

any of the 60 parts that a minute is divided into: She won by 22 seconds.
A second is also any short period of time: I’ll be back in a second.

secondverb [T]

 us   /ˈsek·ənd/
  • second verb [T] (SUPPORT)

to make a formal statement of support for a suggestion made by someone else during a meeting in order to allow a discussion or vote: I second the motion to adjourn.
(Definition of second from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)







"second" in British English

See all translations

secondordinal number, determiner

uk   /ˈsek.ənd/  us   /ˈsek.ənd/
A1 immediately after the first and before any others: Is Carla her first or second child? This is the second time I've had flu this winter. Today is the second (of March).
A1 the position in which a person finishes a race or competition if they finish immediately behind the winner: First prize is two weeks in Barbados and second prize is a weekend in Rome. Jones took second place in the long jump.
B1 Second is used to show that only one thing is better, bigger, etc. than the thing mentioned: St Petersburg is Russia's second (biggest/largest) city. Iraq's oil reserves are second only to Saudi Arabia's.
B1 another: She is often described as a second Marilyn Monroe. You really should make the most of the opportunity, because you won't get a second chance. Richard and Liz have a second home in the mountains. Pay attention to what she's saying because she won't explain it a second time.
happening only once out of every two possible times: We've decided to hold the conference every second year.

expend iconexpend iconMore examples

secondadverb

uk   /ˈsek.ənd/  us   /ˈsek.ənd/
B1 after the first and before any others: Robertson won the race and Cameron was/came/finished second. In this business, money comes first and principles come a very poor second (= they are much less important).
B2 (also secondly) used to introduce the second thing in a list of things you want to say or write: There are two good reasons why we can't do it. First, we can't afford it, and second, we don't have time.

secondnoun

uk   /ˈsek.ənd/  us   /ˈsek.ənd/
  • second noun (TIME)

A2 [C] (abbreviation sec., s) a short unit of time that is equal to a 60th of a minute: There are 60 seconds in a minute. These computers process millions of instructions per second. The new system can trace a phone call in a fraction of a second.
B1 [C] a very short period of time: "Come on, hurry up!" "I'll just/only be a second - I need to close the window." Do you have a second, Paul? I need to talk to you. It won't take a second (= it will be very quick). Wait a couple of/a few seconds before trying again.
the second (that)
as soon as : The second I saw him, I knew he was going to be a star.

expend iconexpend iconMore examples

  • second noun (POSITION)

[S] the second person or thing to do or be something, or the second person or thing mentioned: This is the second of the four tests.
seconds [plural] informal
an extra amount of food that is given after the first amount has been eaten: Would anyone like seconds of ice cream?
  • second noun (MEASUREMENT)

[C] specialized mathematics the smallest unit used for measuring an angle: There are 3,600 seconds in a degree.
  • second noun (DAMAGED PRODUCT)

C2 [C] a product that is sold cheaply because it is damaged or not in perfect condition
  • second noun (GEAR)

[U] (also second gear) in a vehicle, the gear that combines power with limited speed and is used when increasing or reducing speed: You'll have to change (down/up) into second.
  • second noun (QUALIFICATION)

[C] UK (also second-class degree) an undergraduate degree from a university in the UK and some other countries that is a good degree but not the best possible
  • second noun (BASEBALL)

[C usually singular] informal →  second base

secondverb [T]

uk   /ˈsek.ənd/  us   /ˈsek.ənd/
to make a formal statement of support for a suggestion made by someone else during a meeting so that there can be a discussion or vote: The motion was proposed by the club's chairwoman and seconded by the secretary. "I could use a drink." "I'll second that (= I agree with you)!"
seconder
noun [C] uk   /ˈsek.ən.dər/  us   /ˈsek.ən.dɚ/ specialized
There was no seconder for (= person who was willing to support) the motion so it could not be debated.

secondverb [T]

uk   /sɪˈkɒnd/  us   /səˈkɑːnd/ UK
(Definition of second from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"second" in Business English

See all translations

secondnoun [C, usually plural]

uk   /ˈsekənd/
COMMERCE a product that is sold at a lower price than usual because it is damaged or not in perfect condition: Many goods in sales are seconds.

secondverb [T]

/sɪˈkɒnd/ HR, WORKPLACE to send an employee to work somewhere else temporarily, either to increase the number of workers there, to replace another worker, or to exchange experiences or skills: be seconded to sth She was seconded to our department five months ago.
See also
/ˈsekənd/ MEETINGS to make a formal statement of support for a suggestion made by someone else during a meeting so that there can be a discussion or vote: second a motion The motion was proposed by the secretary and seconded by the treasurer.
Compare
(Definition of second from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of second?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

“second” in Business English

A blazing row: words and phrases for arguing and arguments
A blazing row: words and phrases for arguing and arguments
by ,
May 04, 2016
by Kate Woodford We can’t always focus on the positive! This week, we’re looking at the language that is used to refer to arguing and arguments, and the differences in meaning between the various words and phrases. There are several words that suggest that people are arguing about something that is not important. (As you might

Read More 

Word of the Day

droid

a robot (= a machine controlled by computer) that is made to look like a human

Word of the Day

trigger warning noun
trigger warning noun
May 02, 2016
a warning that a subject may trigger unpleasant emotions or memories This is not, I should stress, an argument that trigger warnings should become commonplace on campus.

Read More