Definition of generation in English:



  • 1All of the people born and living at about the same time, regarded collectively.

    ‘one of his generation's finest songwriters’
    • ‘The current generation of athletes has grown up in an era of doping.’
    • ‘She grew up in a generation that knew all about hard work from an early age.’
    • ‘Shaped and moulded by the seasons, John grew up in a generation when everything had its place.’
    • ‘The next generation of young adults is already giving thought to its future family life.’
    • ‘This is a film about a generation that was growing up during wartime, a period of deterioration of all moral, social and economic values.’
    • ‘They were the images a generation grew up with and each episode followed a familiar pattern: the atrocity, the grief, then anger.’
    • ‘Not only has it contributed to the deskilling of the current generation of working age adults, it has also affected health.’
    • ‘I think a lot of the folks that I worked with at NASA were from the generation that grew up at that period of time.’
    • ‘For the generations that grew up during the space race, the future was very hard to predict because the present was moving so fast.’
    • ‘He is now one of the most acclaimed actors of his generation.’
    • ‘The Internet and chatting have contributed to a different set of vocabulary that would cause nightmare to generations grown up in Victorian tradition.’
    • ‘Because of them, countless generations of children have grown up believing that fairies are mischievous little folk who flutter about on butterfly wings.’
    • ‘As a gifted mimic and notorious perfectionist, she would later become the most respected female actor of her generation.’
    • ‘Her name was still magic for many of the public but a new generation was growing up in the post-war period for whom she was yesterday's news.’
    • ‘Despite being fêted as the greatest Shakespearean actor of his generation, he used to claim that he never understood a character until he found the right hat.’
    • ‘How can the current generation of adult Australians help our youth?’
    • ‘There isn't another actor in his generation who could have carried off the conflict and humour of the character with the same skill.’
    • ‘So much of what has been written to date comes from an older generation that have not grown up in a digital universe, or whose exposure has been limited.’
    • ‘But as generations grow up things flip on their heads.’
    • ‘It's a journeyman actor's CV, not the kind that, in our fantasies, we would fashion for one of the greatest actors of a generation.’
    crop, batch, wave, type, range
    age, age group, peer group, cohort, stage of life
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    1. 1.1The average period, generally considered to be about thirty years, in which children grow up, become adults, and have children of their own.
      ‘the same families have lived here for generations’
      • ‘Not only are policemen getting younger, but people are living longer - ten years more on average than a generation ago.’
      • ‘Substantial urban change is generally expected to span prolonged periods: decades, generations, centuries.’
      • ‘His village had grown garlic chives for generations, but the land could not keep up with the population.’
      • ‘It will be generations before anything grows back in vast areas of the Park.’
      • ‘He himself feels this comes from a generation back when members of both sides of his family were blacksmiths.’
      • ‘For generations, people have grown up with the constant message that life is good, and they have internalised it.’
      • ‘Many churches have little memorials to families who have been members for generations, or who have been particularly generous of their time and treasure.’
      • ‘The trauma the abused person experienced will spread to other family members for generations.’
      • ‘For countless generations, children have grown up to take over the farm work, never knowing or expecting to know how to read or write.’
      • ‘This has been my family's house for generations!’
      • ‘Do foods produced from today's high-yield crops have the same nutritional quality as those grown in generations past?’
      • ‘Over five generations, family members have lived through the boom and bust cycles of life on the land.’
      • ‘It was tended by a single family for six generations before it became part of the collection.’
      • ‘A school yard game that's been around for generations seems to be growing in popularity and killing kids.’
      • ‘He believes it could be impossible to replace the stock his family took three generations to breed and he could still be out of pocket.’
      • ‘Our youth are growing up in a generation where motivation is a politically correct term parading as selfish bias.’
      • ‘Even as courts have, over the past two generations, grown more dismissive of hunches, there has been a counter-revolution in the cognitive sciences.’
      • ‘Eventually, over a period of many generations, the remainder of the brain capacity will be utilised.’
      ages, an age, years, aeons, an aeon, a long time, an eternity
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    2. 1.2A set of members of a family regarded as a single step or stage in descent.
      [as modifier, in combination] ‘a third-generation Canadian’
      • ‘That dining table is a place where mom's going to prepare the Thanksgiving Dinner for two or three generations of family members and share and create memories.’
      • ‘Michael was a member of an old and respected family and is the last member of his generation.’
      • ‘Over 50 family members from three generations crowded in for the party.’
      • ‘As you know, there have been four generations of family members running the company, and that generational growth is what we look for.’
      • ‘A large compound with brothers and their wives will always be bustling with family members of several generations and children of many ages.’
      • ‘Groups at the march ranged from union activists to medical students wearing their white coats to three generations of family members.’
      • ‘For this family, religion provides a band that connects family members across generations.’
      • ‘It descended through three generations of a family from Deans, New Jersey, and bears the names of three family members pinpricked on the frame.’
      • ‘Both were built with the aim of teaching the younger generation to love family members.’
      • ‘Members of three generations of a family died in their car when sandwiched between the lorries.’
      • ‘People recognize members of previous generations of family or local figures as well as regions, counties, and hometowns.’
      • ‘A 26-year-old man was jailed for life and two others jailed for 18 years each for their parts in an arson attack on a house which left three generations of the same family dead.’
      • ‘The book is set in the 1960s and tells the story of four generations of one family living in a rambling old house.’
      • ‘She is the last member of her generation of a respected family.’
      • ‘In other words, several members of different generations of the same family are affected with a higher than normal frequency.’
      • ‘She has been able to identify the condition in as many as three generations of a single family.’
      • ‘The passing of a beloved relative is always sad, but there is something especially poignant about the death of the last member of a generation in a family.’
      • ‘This study found the traditional knowledge of healing and use of medicinal plants is disseminated through generations by family members.’
      • ‘For the project, the children spoke to members of older generations, either older family members or friends to ask about how life was when they were children.’
      • ‘Mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, family members of all generations have been lost.’
    3. 1.3A group of people of similar age involved in a particular activity.
      ‘a new generation of actors and directors’
      • ‘At 34, she is a rising star in the first generation of private property developers in more than half a century.’
      • ‘He fitted so comfortably into the role of misfit that it became a template for a whole generation of actors.’
      • ‘Subsequent versions of Linux and their source code have been freely available over the internet, attracting a new generation of software developers.’
      • ‘But a new generation of young activists were drawn into politics by the struggle.’
      • ‘But the anti-capitalist movement represents, above all, the entry of a new generation into political activity.’
      • ‘He's won an adoring young following, after being championed by lads' magazines and a new generation of actors.’
      • ‘His appearance as Hamlet at the Old Vic Theatre in London established him as one of the most talented actors of his generation, ideally suited to the great Shakespearean roles.’
      • ‘It only scratches the surface of what will result as new methods of communication develop and future generations of users emerge.’
      • ‘It launched the careers of a new generation of Scottish actors.’
      • ‘Has New Zealand spawned a generation of video-game developers?’
      • ‘She is more concerned, however, with the new generation of Scottish actors who have gone straight to Hollywood, bypassing the Scottish stage.’
      • ‘It will be operated by the English Golf Union and is designed to help develop the next generation of champions capable of winning on the world stage.’
      • ‘And what is most objected to by the new generation of human rights activists has been precisely the demand for neutrality.’
      • ‘We must ensure quality care for future surgical patients by developing a new generation of perioperative nurses.’
      • ‘The goal is to develop a new generation of soldiers using robot technology.’
      • ‘Then came the rise of the anti-capitalist and anti-war movement which has galvanised a new generation of activists and enthused many others.’
      • ‘What makes him stand out even among a generation of excellent young actors?’
      • ‘Against that background a new generation of activists, inspired by the global outlook of the anti-capitalist movement, is turning to ideas of mass struggle.’
      • ‘The movement saw the emergence of a new generation of activists.’
      • ‘After the political somnolence of the McCarthy era, the ban the bomb and civil rights movements awakened a new generation of young activists.’
      age, age group, peer group, cohort, stage of life
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    4. 1.4A single stage in the development of a type of product or technology.
      ‘a new generation of rear-engined sports cars’
      [as modifier, in combination] ‘fourth-generation broadband’
      • ‘Along with its strong existing base in micromachining, B.C. has all the resources necessary to play a leading role in the development of the next generations of nanotechnologies.’
      • ‘But the program to develop a new generation of reconnaissance satellites is vastly over budget and years behind schedule.’
      • ‘Chip makers are increasingly turning to collaborative projects to help reduce the growing cost of developing future generations of process technology.’
      • ‘Every customer will be helping the development of a new generation of spacecraft.’
      • ‘The technical team is continually developing the next generation of technology to support testers into the future.’
      • ‘She is now working with pharmaceutical companies to develop a new generation of drugs that may be more effective than existing ones.’
      • ‘Enemies of the state are used in experiments to develop new generations of chemical and biological weapons that threaten the world.’
      • ‘He notes the center is designed to evolve into a ‘more urban’ place in the next generation of development.’
      • ‘Cancer researchers in Yorkshire have secured millions of pounds to develop a new generation of therapies to target the most common form of the disease in men.’
      • ‘Menu costs arise because medical device companies often launch new products - or new generations of the same product - in rapid succession.’
      • ‘The first three generations were ablative WORM products, while the fourth is based on phase change technology.’
      • ‘Development of the new generation of phones, which are more sophisticated, is thought unlikely to reduce demand for support and repairs.’
      • ‘Some statistics about the regions illustrate just how big a challenge Ireland faces in the race to develop the next generation of medicines.’
      • ‘Three years ago it began development of its next generation large truck.’
      • ‘The ordnance and explosives experts have teamed up with a de-mining company to develop the next generation of anti-land mine device.’
      • ‘We've run into a number of issues that are often cured in subsequent product generations, but that are very frustrating when initially encountered.’
      • ‘Attention must therefore be paid to all aspects of the ecosystem and to their interactions when developing future generations of supercomputers.’
      • ‘Over the next five years, the government will develop a new generation of modern community hospitals.’
      • ‘The Fire and Heat Materials Research Team is developing the next generation of high-performance, flame-retardant technical yarns.’
      • ‘However, the machine that will be used tomorrow night for the count in the Civic Office comes from a new generation of equipment developed after the Florida fiasco.’
      crop, batch, wave, type, range
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  • 2[mass noun] The production or creation of something.

    ‘methods of electricity generation’
    ‘the generation of wealth’
    • ‘Previously described protocols were used for isolation of mitochondria and generation of cytochrome spectra.’
    • ‘His secondary goal was to use the area as an incubator for business generation.’
    • ‘I can't understand why you would question me about whether this is really for electricity generation.’
    • ‘We rely very heavily on fossil fuel generation of electricity and renewable energies provides a very, very clean alternative.’
    • ‘One of them is the reserve electricity generation that we have already mentioned, and I am pleased that action has been taken about that.’
    • ‘Much energy will be spent making energy, such as electricity generation and the process of liquefying natural gas.’
    • ‘It will be the job of wind engineers to tailor designs to specific wind regimes to maximize electricity generation.’
    • ‘Patents are meant to reward the inventors but also to promote progress through the generation of useful new products.’
    • ‘With the higher demand last year, he said its power plants had used less natural gas in electricity generation.’
    • ‘The main example I chose was the use of nuclear power for electricity generation.’
    • ‘We are not allowed to use coal in our electricity generation.’
    • ‘All are capable of intensifying oxyradical generation in vivo and depleting tissue antioxidant stores.’
    • ‘‘It makes absolutely no sense to burn coal for electricity generation,’ he said.’
    • ‘Has the Minister received any advice recently about Government planning for more electricity generation?’
    • ‘Renewable ‘green’ power will definitely be playing an important part in electricity generation in the years to come.’
    • ‘Scotland's vast renewable energy sources will certainly have some direct contribution to make to electricity generation.’
    • ‘In the longer term, it says that there is an available resource from renewables to account for half of the UK's electricity generation.’
    • ‘Oil was in turn followed by gas, increasingly used for electricity generation, which brought power and light to households throughout the world.’
    • ‘We have greatly limited sulfur emissions from electricity generation, thereby reducing risks from acid rain.’
    • ‘This cooperative interaction influences both the magnitude and kinetics of force generation in skeletal muscle.’
    creation, causing, causation, making, engendering, spawning, production, initiation, origination, inception, occasioning, prompting, kindling, triggering, inspiration
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    1. 2.1The propagation of living organisms; procreation.
      procreation, reproduction, propagation, breeding, fathering, siring, engendering, spawning, creation
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Middle English: via Old French from Latin generatio(n-), from the verb generare (see generate).