One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A group of a thousand things.
- ‘Gauss (who was a prodigious calculator) told a friend that whenever he had a spare 15 minutes he would spend it in counting the primes in a ‘chiliad’.’
- ‘You made my life one breathless thrill then left me on this lonely bed, with no instructions how to fill the chiliads of hours ahead.’
- ‘One of my first projects was to turn my attention to the decreasing frequency of primes, to which end I counted the primes in several chiliads and recorded the results on the attached white pages.’
- 1.1 A thousand years; a millennium.
Late Middle English: from late Latin chilias, chiliad- ‘a thousand years’, from Greek khilias, khiliad-, from khilioi ‘thousand’.
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