English Dictionary

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epoch (ˈiːpɒk Pronunciation for epoch



  1. a point in time beginning a new or distinctive period   ⇒ the invention of nuclear weapons marked an epoch in the history of warfare
  2. a long period of time marked by some predominant or typical characteristic; era
  3. (astronomy) a precise date to which information, such as coordinates, relating to a celestial body is referred
  4. (geology) a unit of geological time within a period during which a series of rocks is formed   ⇒ the Pleistocene epoch
  5. (physics) the displacement of an oscillating or vibrating body at zero time

Derived Forms

epochal (ˈɛpˌɒkəl Pronunciation for epochal  adjective
ˈepˌochally adverb

Word Origin

C17: from New Latin epocha, from Greek epokhē cessation; related to ekhein to hold, have


View thesaurus entry
= era, time, age, period, date, aeon

Translations for 'epoch'

  • British English: epoch If you refer to a long period of time as an epoch, you mean that important events or great changes took place during it. NOUNThe chapters are arranged by themes and historical epochs.
  • Brazilian Portuguese: época
  • Chinese: 时代时時代
  • European Spanish: época
  • French: époque
  • German: Epoche
  • Italian: epoca
  • Japanese: >時代画期的な
  • Korean: 신기원
  • Portuguese: época
  • Spanish: época

Example Sentences Including 'epoch'

As the Blairite epoch gets into its sensibly shod stride, Elton's embrace of mediocrity seems to become ever more passionate.
Ben Thompson SUNSHINE ON PUTTY: The Golden Age of British Comedy from The Big Night Out to The Office (2004)
If imagination and politics do not sound natural companions, that is a commentary on our epoch.
Times, Sunday Times (2002)
In that distant epoch , the Feenologist there was a Cambodian by the name of Pot.
Irish Times (2002)
That was what lay at the heart of their epoch : a frenzied love affair with speed and sound.
Appiganesi, Lisa Dreams of Innocence
The one most commonly used is paradigm shift, denoting that we live in an epoch of shifting paradigm.
The stub of it resembled some great failed animal from an earlier epoch of Earth's history.
Aldiss, Brian Somewhere East of Life
They remember the ghosts of Vichy - and the shadow of that shameful epoch hung heavily over France on Monday.
Times, Sunday Times (2002)
They swim in time, not dying as we do, but living on, epoch after epoch.
Tepper, Sheri S. A Plague of Angels
`Taking the best and leaving the rest belongs to some other epoch ," Mr Keating said.
Misc (1995)


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