Definition of omnibus in English:



  • 1A volume containing several books previously published separately.

    ‘an omnibus of her first trilogy’
    • ‘The four Molesworth books that appear in this omnibus edition (generously comprising Down With Skool!’
    • ‘Chandler's fiction has just been released in three omnibus editions, a sure sign that he maintains an avid readership and lofty reputation.’
    • ‘‘Anger and sadness are not uncommon today to those who still care for the history of this marvellous city’, writes Llewellyn-Jones bluntly in the preface to this omnibus edition.’
    • ‘I had borrowed a friend's omnibus edition of Life Studies and For the Union Dead, and something in me said: ‘This is it!’’
    • ‘This omnibus of three classic studies provides a basic grounding for scholars of India's maritime history.’
    • ‘In reviewing a stack of recent volumes sent for this omnibus, I was struck by the number of times the subject arose, in one form or another.’
    • ‘This omnibus, richly illustrated and produced, puts together all his writings over the years.’
    • ‘The omnibus has made somewhat of a comeback in recent years with everyone from Robert Ludlum to John Grisham and Wilbur Smith combining their novels into one edition.’
    • ‘Every couple of years the monthly issues would be gathered up and published in an omnibus, what the publishers referred to as ‘phone books’ as they had the same size and feel as the Yellow Pages.’
    1. 1.1British A single edition of two or more consecutive television or radio programmes previously broadcast separately.
      ‘Coronation Street's rival EastEnders was boosted by a weekend omnibus’
      • ‘I watch it every day religiously and to top it all, I watch the omnibus on Sunday morning once more.’
      • ‘More than £1 million is being invested in the project which provides five daily, ten-minute episodes, broadcast Monday to Friday and repeated as an omnibus at the weekend.’
      • ‘Clearly there is different footage in the omnibus as a result of the extra time it has, but it seems much more pro-Anna than the earlier one.’
      • ‘Amicus had only one director for each omnibus, but they were true professionals.’
      • ‘Last time I saw my team playing was in September 2000 when we beat Barnsley 1-0, but I missed the goal because the pub decided to put the Eastenders omnibus on instead…’
      • ‘As with any omnibus film, the contents of 11'09 ‘01 are variable in quality, but the highs are very high.’’
      • ‘Last night being Saturday, Big Brother wasn't on at 10 pm - it was the weekly omnibus with ‘unseen’ footage.’
      • ‘The first batch of compact goodies in a festival line-up full of such omnibuses, this one coughs up a couple of the best numbers you'll see all weekend.’
      • ‘Night and Day has also become notorious for its decision to broadcast a raunchy, late-night omnibus (the other shows go out at teatime).’
      • ‘Then, in addition to all that, you have the soap omnibuses.’
      • ‘Now, they can actually show you what happened, in the sort of terrifying detail that makes the EastEnders omnibus seem like a Tom and Jerry cartoon.’
      • ‘This game is grimmer than an EastEnders omnibus on a black and white TV.’
      • ‘The second omnibus commissioned by the Festival involves pieces by Jia Zhangke, Tsai Ming-liang and John Akomfrah as the only non-Asian director.’
      • ‘Drama, horror, Brookside omnibuses, even, God forbid, a Disney weepie, all of these beckon before I'll reach for The Nutty Professor.’
      • ‘To be honest, for much of the match it looked unlikely that anyone would find the back of the net and the first half probably saw BBC viewers collectively reaching for their remote controls and checking out the Eastenders omnibus.’
      • ‘Insiders have explained that sometimes, in the dead of night, one can still hear Dr Schlosser's impassioned wails, and his wife's half-witted giggling at her favourite soap opera omnibus.’
  • 2dated A bus.

    ‘a horse-drawn omnibus’
    • ‘49 Moreover horse cars only charged a nickel, which was much less than omnibuses.’
    • ‘Desperately looking around for the omnibus, they passed a short alleyway and the woman saw a busy street beyond.’
    • ‘She was an enthusiastic participant in Victorian Evening, dressing up and riding in the horse-drawn omnibus - a true ambassador for the town.’
    • ‘Donnegal widened and straightened the road from Durham and established a line of omnibuses to transport tourists and visitors up to the ‘beautiful haven by the lake.’’
    • ‘It was that a south-bound omnibus, while overtaking another southbound vehicle, made violent contact with an oncoming SUV.’
    • ‘Roadworthy commuter omnibuses with certificates of fitness and route permits get fuel from designated service stations at $450 per litre of petrol and $200 for a diesel.’
    • ‘Luxurious omnibuses carrying passengers and cargo make their appearance late at night and early in the morning.’
    • ‘Cabs were introduced in London in 1823 and omnibuses in 1829.’
    • ‘Children rode in a procession of omnibuses carrying flags, while farmers from nearby Lake County formed a column of farm wagons carrying produce they would donate to the fair.’
    • ‘Buggies and omnibuses swarmed the street, filling it with the clop of hooves and creak of wheels and thick, sharp smell of dung.’
    • ‘There is the inevitable clop-clop of a horse, the rumble of a motorised omnibus, the further ambient uproar of the great city's life.’
    • ‘When George Shillibeer initiated a London omnibus service in 1829, three horses were used, as in Paris, but after some years most London omnibuses were drawn by two horses.’
    • ‘The first and largest is the omnibuses; then there are the vans from the railroads, and other commercial traffic, which now form a very large item, say £12,000 a year; next the agricultural.’
    • ‘Yet this tableau of horse-drawn omnibuses, coaches, carts, bicycles, and ubiquitous Cooks Tour advertisements is more than one of moment: it validates an epoch of Britain's prosperity and London's greatness.’
    • ‘The separation of classes was underlined by the formation of middle-class suburbs, linked to the town centre by trams, omnibuses, or railways.’
    • ‘It operated horse trams, then electric trams, two different systems of tracklesses and finally motor omnibuses.’
    • ‘Three omnibuses were engaged for the occasion from Grasmere, and about eight o'clock the party started off from Keswick, accompanied by the town band.’
    • ‘And he no longer uses the Clapham omnibus, because he drives a Ford Mondeo.’
    • ‘If the road traffic law were rigidly enforced the railway might hope to obtain a large amount of business which now goes to motor trucks and omnibuses.’
    • ‘At the same time horse omnibuses operated on established lines in Sofia City between the Sveta Nedelya Square and the Railway Station, Gorna Banya and Knyazhevo districts.’
    bus, minibus, van
    View synonyms


  • Comprising several items.

    ‘omnibus editions of novels’
    • ‘This weekend Congress was working on a massive $388 billion omnibus spending bill that will cover all manner of federal spending.’
    • ‘The Senate never voted on many of the separate funding measures before they were submitted as part of the massive and unamendable omnibus bill; and, indeed, many of the measures were never even subjected to debate.’
    • ‘Typically, omnibus farm bills address a wide range of agriculture-related policies, thereby creating a coalition of otherwise diverse and sometimes even opposing interests in support of the legislation.’
    • ‘This is a classic example of legislation going to a select committee, people then discovering they want to add something to it - this so-called omnibus bill - and the bill coming back twice as big as it was before it went to the committee.’
    • ‘The four bills combine to provide nearly as much of a tax windfall to the wealthy, $733 billion, as last year's omnibus measure, which would have cut taxes for the rich and the upper middle class by $792 billion.’
    • ‘That leaves seven measures as candidates for folding into an omnibus package.’
    • ‘Like Daschle, he also addressed the omnibus spending package that the Majority Leader had hoped to slip through the Senate without a vote.’
    • ‘This particular bill, apart from being somewhat late in coming back to the House, is a tremendously huge, omnibus bill, and has very, very little to do with assurance of health practitioners' competence.’
    • ‘Reassurance has been offered in the form of one of those omnibus words which politicians use as an alternative to thought and in the hope that they can construct a careless consensus around a policy which they dare not precisely define.’
    • ‘The omnibus bill she was referring to is now called the Relationships Bill, and she is right - this bill will make the Marriage Act have no practical effect.’
    • ‘People certainly flock to omnibus stores, as Wal-Mart, the Sears catalog and have proven.’
    • ‘A mainstream newspaper is therefore an omnibus vehicle that packages a number of distinct products.’
    • ‘Most of these bills are omnibus bills that have a whole lot of other things.’
    • ‘I couldn't agree more with Zizek that modern capitalism makes omnibus promises (mostly implied) that result in silly stuff like chocolate Ex-Lax and the decaf latte.’
    • ‘In summary, in an omnibus sense the amendments in this bill may seem to be just a tidy-up, but I want to come back to the first one.’
    • ‘Those agents of omnibus law and order preferred a quiet morning in Giffnock when the passenger list consisted of two old ladies and an au pair.’
    • ‘Well, let's start with Julianne, spending bills, spending bills - what are we likely to see here, some big, bulky omnibus spending program package passed this week?’
    • ‘For instance, first-wave reforms were sometimes part of omnibus education bills that included other policy changes, such as increased spending on K - 12 education.’
    • ‘On Nov.25, House leaders agreed to convene a rare December session beginning Dec.8 to debate and move the omnibus spending package.’
    • ‘It's an omnibus of error and can't be allowed to go unremarked.’


Early 19th century: via French from Latin, literally ‘for all’, dative plural of omnis.