Definition of time in English:



  • 1mass noun The indefinite continued progress of existence and events in the past, present, and future regarded as a whole.

    ‘travel through space and time’
    ‘one of the greatest wits of all time’
    • ‘From time immemorial we have been passing through many, many species of life.’
    • ‘So many things could happen in such a short space of time and yet the whole day lay before her.’
    • ‘Yet he still found time to support local events this year, showing he has not forgotten home.’
    • ‘Because time is not experienced in the same way by either guy when observed by the other guy.’
    • ‘The number of times they were through with time and space to finish it off was incredible.’
    • ‘If God timelessly exists he is neither earlier nor later nor simultaneous with any event of time.’
    • ‘On the plus side, I've had more time over the past month to catch up with some reading.’
    • ‘Life for me is essentially a log book of time past and time that is yet to arrive.’
    • ‘Somebody was asking me the other day what I thought the coolest blog of all time was.’
    • ‘It's been a hectic 12 months for the group but they have made big strides in a short space of time.’
    • ‘What we see here is simply the ordinary effect of the passage of time, from future to present to past.’
    • ‘The modern world-system has features which can be described in terms of space and time.’
    • ‘I say apparently, because I didn't give us enough time to see the whole of the museum.’
    • ‘I simply cannot work, the crisis and the struggle for existence takes all my time and energy.’
    • ‘If the market is stable, why take time trying to anticipate future requirements?’
    • ‘It's a very large investment in terms of time moving the whole company to this.’
    • ‘I've had a lot of free time over the past few days and I've been doing a lot of reading.’
    • ‘The origin of the living entities' bondage in matter goes back to time immemorial.’
    1. 1.1 The continued progress of existence as affecting people and things.
      ‘things were getting better as time passed’
      • ‘Because so much time has passed, the case can only be conducted under war crimes legislation.’
      • ‘She suffers near constant pain and the restrictions on her life increase as time passes.’
      • ‘Well, we didn't and we got the programme together in a very short space of time.’
      • ‘I am aware, as time passes, that adults talk about this, and that it makes them laugh.’
      • ‘The day will slip away from us as time passes, but not the clarity of the actions we took together in response.’
      • ‘I guess Camden's time has passed and this new station is a part of that, but it'll be shame to see it go.’
      • ‘At the moment he divides his time between there and London, but he'd prefer to be more settled.’
      • ‘This could have happened over a short space of time or over a number of years.’
      • ‘We were going to have to get very busy and make a lot of contacts if we were to achieve our objectives in such a short space of time.’
      • ‘Bob always had time to treat the whole person and was a first class diagnostician.’
      • ‘Several decades of time have passed by as quickly as the clouds have been blown away.’
      • ‘It would be revealing to return in five years' time to see whether Balgrean has stood the test of time.’
      • ‘I guess now enough time has passed for you to hear all about my Roskilde romance.’
      • ‘So many mishaps in so short a space of time is a sure sign that there is something seriously wrong with the complex.’
      • ‘I feel sure as time passes by more and more will join the growing numbers in this wonderful pastime.’
      • ‘But the point is, it is not so much what you do, but who you pass your time with and in what mood you are.’
      • ‘Freya thought about having to entertain guests every night for an indefinite period of time.’
      • ‘Soon they were talking about subjects that related not to pillows and time continued to tick on.’
      • ‘It took time for the event to grab the limelight, but its potential was soon to be realised.’
      • ‘He didn't have a whole lot of time to write the rest of this, but he'd do his best.’
    2. 1.2 Time or an amount of time as reckoned by a conventional standard.
      ‘it's eight o'clock New York Time’
      • ‘Eastern Standard Time (EST) operates in New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory, Victoria, Tasmania and Queensland.’
      • ‘At 2 a.m. on the second Sunday in March, we set our clocks forward one hour ahead of standard time.’
      • ‘I told him what happened and he gave you an extension: it has to be in Washington by midnight our time.’
    3. 1.3 The personification of time, typically as an old man with a scythe and hourglass.
      • ‘He's almost like America's version of Father Time.’
      • ‘‘If I can deliver presents all around the world in one night,’ Santa claims, ‘I sure can get you back to Father Time's Castle in a few Bongs!’’
      • ‘Of course a century and a half is a long time, especially if one's a fruit fly or a figment of someone's imagination, yet in another sense it's a mere drop in the blessed bucket of Father Time.’
      • ‘However Bruce needs no carrot greater than the one provided by Father Time.’
      • ‘As a result, Scotland loses people in their most productive years, while it gains those whose contribution to the economy is severely limited by Father Time.’
      • ‘Yet Father Time may may yet catch up with the fiery Lancashireman.’
      • ‘At the same time, he is torn by his affection for the Old Guard, the players who have provided sterling service, but who can only defy Father Time for so long.’
      • ‘They have some very promising youngsters coming through as Father Time catches up with a few of their long serving stalwarts.’
      • ‘Finally the seasons were chased away by Father Time, ending the tableaux.’
      • ‘Power began to flow out from Father Time's scythe.’
  • 2A point of time as measured in hours and minutes past midnight or noon.

    ‘the time is 9.30’
    • ‘From day to day and from season to season, the times of sunset and sunrise change continuously.’
    • ‘They normally have to be taken between one and three times a day and at specific times.’
    • ‘To be representative, the study included weekends and all times of drug rounds on each ward.’
    • ‘Such a secure channel is usually available only at certain times and under certain circumstances.’
    • ‘Sir Barry said that there was a good case for carrying out operations at more flexible times of the day.’
    • ‘The obstetrician was to tell the anaesthetist of the target time for delivery.’
    • ‘The time was nine-fifteen. Time to turn out the lights.’
    • ‘I saw the time was eight minutes to four from my watch as I braced myself.’
    • ‘The location of each individual animal was also recorded at these same times daily.’
    • ‘By this time the amount of noise I was making had woken the neighbours.’
    • ‘By the time that ward round was finished, I had learnt two more things that were important.’
    • ‘The times of day that I can relax are very late at night or very early in the morning.’
    • ‘We were lucky - that was the only time that week that the Sunset made it as far as LA.’
    • ‘The results were the same when we considered only those who responded at both times.’
    • ‘The time was now 16.30 and a few late passengers were now aboard and the flight was ready.’
    1. 2.1 A moment or definite portion of time allotted, used, or suitable for a purpose.
      ‘the scheduled departure time’
      ‘shall we fix a time for the meeting?’
      • ‘So, similarly, most things in the middle of the night or before you get up can be ruled out; they are not suitable times.’
      • ‘Also, there are no other suitable times for input on prevention of relapse before patients are discharged.’
      • ‘Departure and arrival times at Lerwick and Aberdeen will be unaffected.’
      • ‘Do set a limit for how loud the music can be, and a definite time for when it must stop.’
      • ‘The dance and drama classes are enrolling on next Friday night at the usual times.’
      • ‘Hartley has every right to be upbeat and optimistic about his life at the present time.’
      • ‘And at our time of departure the man who was talking the woman into bed was just glad of our seat.’
      • ‘Since departure times are often revised, my evidence suddenly looks less than conclusive.’
      • ‘He blamed these changes for the varying departure times of 13 buses on two days in March from the station last year.’
      • ‘It claims to have monthly meetings but does not publicly advertise the dates and times to its own community.’
      • ‘A tidal entrance to the harbour at Hayle restricts departure and return times.’
      • ‘We get out big numbers especially at the peak times in the mornings and evenings to catch the scab buses.’
      • ‘A real-time system would allow users to see delays and would give new estimated departure times.’
      • ‘What is important at the present time is to try to understand their position today.’
      • ‘Not being allowed to stay there at peak times defeated the purpose of the exercise.’
      • ‘In notebooks, he meticulously recorded arrival and departure times of trains at stations.’
      • ‘Some GUM clinics have drop in times, when you don't need to make an appointment.’
      • ‘To take up the offer to meet with her please contact the home to arrange a suitable time.’
      • ‘The best way to avoid these problems is to follow nature's prescription of suitable times to eat.’
      • ‘Retail is not strong enough in Swindon at the present time to cross over the lines.’
      • ‘Dates and times were fixed for all competitions and clubs had to adhere to all these dates.’
    2. 2.2often time for/to do something The favourable or appropriate time to do something.
      ‘it was time to go’
      ‘it's time for bed’
      • ‘At the appropriate time, a subsequent order is issued that states the actual day and times.’
      • ‘After the funeral comes the wake, the time for contemplation as the past releases its grip.’
      • ‘He said he would wait for a more appropriate time to put the questions to the Government.’
      • ‘Clearly it is time for standards and guidelines on best practice for all professionals.’
      • ‘Refrigerate for a good hour or so before serving, so that the whole thing has time to come together.’
      • ‘The night ended at midnight, which was about the right time for me, and I felt really happy.’
      • ‘Well, I use the Autumn equinox as a time to say goodbye to Summer and to welcome the fall.’
      • ‘Surely now is the time for the medical profession and the public to work together.’
      • ‘My university years were a time to rediscover the joys of the darkened cinema.’
      • ‘This continues until it becomes time for that player to play a shot in which case the roles reverse.’
      • ‘The questions that follow from that for us can obviously be discussed at the appropriate time.’
      • ‘It is time to examine the whole operation to see where real added value can be achieved.’
      • ‘Is now the time to reflect on past mistakes and work together towards a better Swindon?’
      • ‘Summer camp is normally a time for playing sports and enjoying the great outdoors.’
      moment, point, point in time, occasion, hour, minute, second, instant, juncture, stage, phase
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3a time An indefinite period.
      ‘travelling always distorts one's feelings for a time’
      • ‘And there are definitely times where the momentum of the mix flags slightly.’
      • ‘For a time I thought he was writing about Los Angeles.’
      • ‘Yet there may come a time when this era is remembered in some form of golden haze.’
      • ‘It reminded me of a time many years before when a guy asked me did I want to come in for coffee.’
      • ‘For a time, the courts were tolerant of this aggressive litigation, but some landmark legal judgments in the last month have effectively stalled this.’
      • ‘The worst day was the end of the month, a time when his funds were close to drying up.’
      • ‘I can remember a time only a few years ago when Leeds away was one of the toughest fixtures on the list.’
      while, spell, stretch, stint, span, season, interval, period, period of time, length of time, duration, run, space, phase, stage, term
      View synonyms
    4. 2.4also times A portion of time in history or characterized by particular events or circumstances.
      ‘Victorian times’
      ‘at the time of Galileo’
      ‘the park is beautiful at this time of year’
      • ‘This was the time when all middle class families felt uncomfortable about food.’
      • ‘There was a time last year when I thought I needed to move into the centre and it happened.’
      • ‘In light of this discovery, all three women must come to terms with a time thought forgotten.’
      • ‘In a time of heightened security one would think they would know where all the luggage was.’
      • ‘Life in Lille became darker by the month and a time came when Bobby could stand no more.’
      • ‘Both churches, parts of which are thought to date back to Saxon times, are now surrounded by scaffolding.’
      • ‘This is a fight that's been going on not only in modern history but in Biblical times.’
      • ‘People have this vision of childhood as being a time of innocence and playing dolls.’
      • ‘It is a trip which is a must for any person who wants to get a sense of a past time.’
      • ‘We can also search for variations in at even earlier times in the history of the universe.’
      • ‘We truly are entering one of the most important times in world history.’
      • ‘This is a time of year when many Americans take to the roads for their summer holidays.’
      • ‘Let me take you back a few years, to a time when a young man happily ate, drank and was rather too merry!’
      • ‘That tells us about a time in the past when sheep were the mainstay of the economy.’
      • ‘At different times in its history, such a system might be structured as either anarchy or hierarchy.’
      • ‘One of the fascinations of stamps is that they broadly reflect the history of their times.’
      • ‘The town of Beckenham dates back to Saxon times, though Iron Age and Roman remains have also been found.’
      • ‘Surely the time is past when the Caucasian peoples had to think of Persia as an enemy.’
      • ‘There are times in the history of any company where change in senior leadership makes sense.’
      • ‘Yeltsin's reign was a time for casting your net wide and seeing how much you could catch.’
      era, age, epoch, period, aeon, years, days
      View synonyms
    5. 2.5also times The conditions of life during a particular period.
      ‘times have changed’
      • ‘The story is a poignant narrative of the troubled times we live in when communal riots tear the couple apart.’
      • ‘In different times and conditions, we might call upon experts to help us, and not just with the bowling.’
      • ‘In my book, McCoy was banned because the stewards did not want to be seen to be doing nothing in the midst of these troubled times.’
      • ‘I don't, for a moment, pretend that times are not tough and may well get tougher.’
      • ‘He hadn't been dealt life's best hand it has to be said, and he knew more downs than ups in troubled times.’
      • ‘It is not an environment which encourages dressing room unity when times are hard.’
      • ‘I know, it sounds silly to say that you go through hard times with someone you've never met, but we did.’
      • ‘Daniel said that the centre had given him support and stability through hard times.’
      • ‘He had said before how he thought that he would have been good ruling in troubled times.’
      • ‘These are troubled times for Agassi on the court as well as off it.’
      • ‘Mata Gujri was an inspiring force during one of the most difficult times in Sikh history.’
      • ‘A lot of men and women left this country when times were hard and prospered in foreign lands.’
      • ‘The Benevolent Fund helps former players who have hit on hard times.’
      • ‘She was a good parishioner and the best of mothers, who raised a family in hard times and was never heard to grumble.’
      • ‘I think in these troubled times, it takes the world's artists to express what is on all our minds.’
      • ‘I don't deny that we all live in troubled times, whatever minority we come from.’
      • ‘This book is an amazing testimony to the power of the intellect and of steadfast faith in very troubled times.’
      • ‘Chris decided to change careers because changing market conditions meant bleak times for many producers.’
      • ‘We are not, as people would have you believe, living in historic times in this country.’
      • ‘I have another two months of steady work too, which is the sort of news one likes to hear in these troubled times.’
      situation, state of affairs, experience, life, way of life
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    6. 2.6Times Used in names of newspapers.
      ‘the Oxford Times’
      • ‘This was one of the best pieces in a series on race that won a Pulitzer Prize for the Times.’
      • ‘A year ago, a Times Arts reporter endeavored to find out.’
      • ‘Previously I had been a Times staff reporter based in New York for many years.’
      • ‘Today a Times editorial came down squarely on the side of civil liberties.’
      • ‘John Delane was aged 23 when in 1841 he became editor of The Times, then London's leading newspaper.’
      • ‘He told a Times journalist that he intended to improve living standards for the poor, and that the bourgeoisie had some nasty surprises in store.’
      • ‘A check by a Times reporter at the site yesterday found vehicles and heavy trucks loaded with bags of maize crossing through the bridge.’
      • ‘Even on professional assignment, it just didn't look right for a Times journalist to be seen rummaging about in bin-bags.’
      • ‘At the very least, a Times reporter should reinvestigate both the Russian and Iraqi ends of this story.’
      • ‘Given these facts, why does a Times reporter write that moral values were the ‘defining issue’?’
      • ‘Today, however, a Times reporter suggests congressional reform is dead.’
      • ‘In Seattle, where fish are obviously more important, the story was front-page banner headline news for the Times.’
      • ‘Editorial insertions of stereotypes and fabrications into a Times reporter's copy extended at least into the 1980s.’
      • ‘For many years the London newspaper, The Times, carried an advertisement for colonic irrigation on its front page.’
      • ‘This is not the headline a Times subeditor might have chosen, nor any fair-minded one, because it made Mr Bower's argument even sillier than it was in the first place.’
      • ‘For there are a number of more subtle biases to be perceived by readers of newspapers like The Times - and other media as well.’
      • ‘Because The Times separates news and editorial operations, he has no involvement in the editorial pages of the newspaper.’
      • ‘Meanwhile, a Times reporter in Kitwe reported that car dealers there have bemoaned the increase on excise duty on imported saloon cars.’
      • ‘Plagiarism has almost become mainstream in India now, with even a Times of India journalist indulging in the shameful act.’
      • ‘The realistic front-runner is Keller, currently a Times op-ed columnist writer and Sunday magazine writer.’
    7. 2.7one's time One's lifetime.
      ‘I've known a lot of women in my time’
      • ‘I have seen some terrible things in my time.’
      • ‘I have always been into sports (in my time I have played/done cricket, badminton, circuit training, kick boxing, circuit training and even rock climbing!’
      lifetime, life, life span, allotted span, days, time on earth, existence, threescore years and ten
      View synonyms
    8. 2.8one's time The successful, fortunate, or influential part of a person's life or career.
      ‘in my time that was unheard of’
      • ‘He hasn't grudged Andy a moment of his time in the spotlight but has been desperate for a taste of it of his own.’
      • ‘He may not be ready quite yet, but if he continues to progress Nieminen's time will come soon.’
      • ‘But he took the news well, in part because he knows his time will come soon.’
      • ‘Fiammetta relishes his time in the spotlight.’
      heyday, day, hour, prime, best days, best years, youth, vigour, springtime, salad days, maturity
      View synonyms
    9. 2.9one's time The appropriate or expected time for something, in particular childbirth or death.
      ‘he seemed old before his time’
      • ‘I wanted to give the impression of a man old before his time and an almost stylised unnaturalistic feel to the model.’
      • ‘Ask the mother who has given birth to a child before time.’
      • ‘The anger still lingered even now, but then the shock had been such that she gave birth before her time.’
    10. 2.10 An apprenticeship.
      ‘engineering officers traditionally served their time as fitters in the yards’
      • ‘Jamie had served his time as a joiner and had worked in the. construction industry for the past 15 years.’
      • ‘Rob served his time as a plasterer and has over 33 years trade experience in the wall and floor tiling profession.’
    11. 2.11dated A period of menstruation or pregnancy.
      • ‘To occupy her time, she had been thinking of writing a biography of her husband.’
    12. 2.12mass noun The normal rate of pay for time spent working.
      ‘if called out at the weekend they are paid time and a half’
      • ‘Anyone who works these holidays must give up the payments of double time and time and a half.’
      • ‘Under the Holidays Act, if an employee works on any public holiday, that work now attracts a minimum payment of time and a half.’
      • ‘The Fair Labor Standards Act has no requirement for double time pay.’
    13. 2.13 The length of time taken to run a race or complete an event or journey.
      ‘his time for the mile was 3:49.31’
      • ‘Time for the six furlongs on at fast track was 1: 11.20.’
      • ‘A year later, he did the second Bolton marathon and knocked an hour off the time.’
      • ‘We introduced the first chest pain specialist nurse in the region in my centre and have some of the best door to needle times.’
      • ‘His time in the event was unimportant, and that applies to many of the races he competes in these days.’
      • ‘The lights were designed to improve bus journey times but according to residents they made traffic problems worse.’
      • ‘This left censoring tends to overestimates of the time from seroconversion to a given stage.’
      • ‘Journey times between Manchester Piccadilly and London St Pancras are just over three hours.’
      • ‘They include adding a minute per mile to the journey time and having enough petrol.’
      • ‘We assessed the rate of patients undergoing endoscopy as well as the time to first relapse.’
      • ‘Rates of advanced neoplasia use the time between the first and last surveillance.’
      • ‘The second record was broken by six seconds with a time of three minutes and 26 seconds.’
      • ‘Time for the 1,600 meters was 1: 42.50.’
      • ‘Time for the 2,400 meters was 2: 33.62.’
      • ‘Time for the seven furlongs on a soft turf was 1: 41.’
      • ‘Time for the 1,500 meters was 1: 29.48.’
      • ‘He ran the third best time in history over 5,000 meters in the U.S. trials in 1972.’
      • ‘He added the lane had improved journey times for the 89 bus on that stretch of road by a minute.’
      • ‘Journey times were halved, so they were able to pick up more fares.’
      • ‘Similarly, the emphasis on waiting times for day surgery leads to a grotesque distortion of priorities.’
      • ‘There is an agreed need for improved investment in the NHS and action to reduce waiting times.’
    14. 2.14British The moment at which the opening hours of a pub end.
      ‘the landlord called time’
      • ‘Outsiders might think that the York Beer Festival is all about getting as much quality real ale down your neck before time is called.’
    15. 2.15
      ‘he scored the third five minutes from time’
      short for "full time"
      • ‘The teams were level at the break 0-3 each, and 0-6 each 15 minutes before time.’
      • ‘Unfortunately, within ten minutes of the second half the hosts breached the Acomb defence twice before Acomb plundered a consolation reply a minute before time.’
      • ‘Eventually, ten minutes before time, some more fantastic link-up play with Sullivan enabled Doak to slip the winner into the side netting.’
      • ‘John Lea was again called on with the boot and extended Lismore's lead with a penalty a quarter of an hour before time.’
      • ‘If this had been a boxing match the ref would have stopped the contest a good 15 minutes before time.’
      • ‘Aloisi, who had replaced midfielder Cesar Palacios eight minutes earlier, pounced just before time to earn Osasuna a deserved draw.’
      • ‘They fell 2-1 behind to an Andy Cole goal 12 minutes from time.’
      • ‘Two minutes before time he latched on to James Okoli's through-ball and coolly slotted the ball past Leigh Walker in the visitors' goal.’
      • ‘Howey, who trains with Dartford Judokwai Club, lost to yuko from Roberge, and although she managed a koka she could not find a winning move before time elapsed.’
      • ‘However Castlecuffe slipped behind in the second half but the girls rallied and piled on the pressure and were back in the lead, minutes before time.’
      • ‘Pandiani had opened the scoring after a goalmouth melee before Dennis Bergkamp forced home an equaliser two minutes before time.’
      • ‘Klose's final goal came just seven minutes from time.’
      • ‘Try of the afternoon came from David Whitehouse, who ran 75 metres to put his team unassailably ahead 13 minutes before time.’
      • ‘Unfortunately, Vines was forced off with a knee injury after 21 minutes and Watts made way for former Dulwich Hamlet man Peter Adeniyi four minutes before time.’
    16. 2.16American Football Baseball A moment at which play stops temporarily within a game.
      ‘the umpire called time’
      • ‘Baseball players and managers of the offensive and defensive team, as well as umpires, can request time out for a number of purposes.’
      • ‘To your first question in regards to calling time, that is up to the umpire s judgement whether to call time or not.’
  • 3mass noun Time as allotted, available, or used.

    ‘we need more time’
    ‘it would be a waste of time’
    • ‘We assume that a male may participate in at most a single breeding aggregation in any given time interval.’
    • ‘My passion is Sikhism and that is where I enjoy devoting my spare time.’
    • ‘Time available for the mission is one year or until the mission is complete.’
    • ‘I spent time with my family down in LA this weekend and it was great.’
    • ‘At any given time interval, the exudate collected from individual plants never contributed to more than one replicate.’
    • ‘The more speed and time available, the more likely someone will uncover your secret number.’
    • ‘On average, governors volunteer around five hours of their spare time each month.’
    • ‘The twenty minute drive gave her time to think and process what had just happened.’
    • ‘She rarely spent time with the family, and he started to complain.’
    • ‘In fact, once the allotted time elapsed, I was actually able to get myself into my wheelchair alone.’
    • ‘The last year has been particularly stressful for Joe and he has spent little time with Katie.’
    • ‘They usually have a full-time job but devote their spare time to patrolling their local area.’
    • ‘I think a lot of players from bigger clubs have spent time on loan at smaller clubs and it has really helped.’
    • ‘I spent two hours in the pub, left an hour early, and booked the time as overtime.’
    • ‘They also spend leisure time exercising at the gym and attending classes and workshops.’
    • ‘The researchers already have collected the same data for the same time period this year.’
    • ‘They prefer spending leisure time playing or watching television rather than reading.’
    • ‘Many of us spend leisure time sitting in front of television screens or computer monitors.’
    • ‘Most of his spare time is spent fishing, gardening or with his wife and four children.’
    • ‘That's a lot of time spent fiddling with the steering wheel in a traffic queue.’
    1. 3.1informal A prison sentence.
      ‘he was doing time for fraud’
      • ‘By law once they've served their time they are then free, a clean slate in a sense.’
      • ‘Any other released prisoner who has served his time would be offered a fresh start.’
      • ‘The fact that he's served his time makes no difference given the way the law is phrased.’
      • ‘Rumors were she would get about three years' jail time.’
      • ‘He faces a possible court martial and time in military prison for his action.’
      • ‘The prison experience should not be a happy one; it should be a lot harder to do time than at present.’
      • ‘He had a record for burglary stretching back to when he was 13 and had done time in prison.’
      • ‘They may serve time in prison, but they also receive treatment for their addiction.’
      • ‘As you read this article, 15,000 destitute dads are spending time behind bars.’
      • ‘I hope that the strong attitude that saw me through my career will see me through my time in prison.’
      prison term, prison sentence, jail sentence, penal sentence
      View synonyms
  • 4An instance of something happening or being done; an occasion.

    ‘this is the first time I have got into debt’
    ‘the nurse came in four times a day’
    • ‘Think for a moment of those times when you do occasionally make burning eye contact with a cute stranger.’
    • ‘Just watch the color and the smell and stir a few times at the right moments.’
    • ‘I would try just several sheets of white paper on top next time rather than the whole platen.’
    • ‘Nationally some children are being moved up to 40 times before a suitable home can be found.’
    • ‘I have mentioned my driving history a few times in the last year and a bit.’
    • ‘The United States government and democracy has been in peril many times in its history.’
    • ‘If she could turn back time, she would love to live that moment a thousand times over.’
    • ‘She had imagined the moment countless times, both in her waking hours and her dreams.’
    • ‘Hauerwas practiced it with him a number of times over breakfast before sending him to school.’
    • ‘This time, the whole nation rises up as one, demanding a return to a life that has fun.’
    • ‘This was the first bloodless revolution in Tbilisi, a city which has been burned down forty times in its history.’
    • ‘He politely checked the mobile with a quick glance each time, then continued without a pause.’
    • ‘Colm Kelly played well coming close to scoring a few times in the closing minutes.’
    • ‘Often, the lack of communication forces universities to renew the dates a number of times.’
    • ‘I lost count the number of times Sligo players lost possession of the ball in the tackle.’
    • ‘The first half proceeded at a rapid pace, as momentum switched hands numerous times.’
    • ‘The date was postponed several times due to the unsettled issue of taxation.’
    • ‘Emergency crews were called to Charfleets industrial estate, on Canvey, three times last night.’
    • ‘If you take two showers a day, should you use both shampoo and conditioner both times?’
    • ‘I listened back to the recorded version a few times last night, and I am sadly unimpressed.’
    instance, moment, juncture, point
    View synonyms
    1. 4.1 An event, occasion, or period experienced in a particular way.
      ‘she was having a rough time of it’
      • ‘It is a great chance for us to give them a bit back from some of the tough times we have experienced on the road.’
      • ‘We all need to remember that we have our breaking moments, our down times, our weaknesses.’
      • ‘If we'd relied on self-adhesive labels in the past we'd be experiencing very difficult times now.’
      • ‘Sleep involves five main stages and the brain cycles through these stages several times in the night.’
      • ‘Our tour to Prague last week was very successful and a great time was had by all.’
      • ‘I started very young and I've had wonderful experiences as well as some tough times.’
      • ‘This has been a busy season full of good times and reflective moments for our team.’
      • ‘The trials will, however, be military trials, as is appropriate for a time of war.’
      • ‘The company does not expect a hefty compensation bill as other insurers have also experienced tough times.’
      • ‘We cannot come to appreciate the happy times unless we have experienced the pain of unhappiness.’
      • ‘If anything completing tertiary education should be the beginning of the tough times ahead.’
      • ‘Acne may become worse in times of stress, although it is not clear why.’
      • ‘I took some time off to go down to Cambridge for a friend's wedding, and a good time was had by all.’
      • ‘Football is not the only one of the town's local trades to be experiencing a boom time in the last few years.’
      • ‘Although his humour is dark and satirical it is also fiercely funny, and a good time was had by all.’
      • ‘The mayor is boasting that the city is experiencing unprecedented good times.’
      • ‘They seemed to focus only on times and experiences when our family was truly enjoying each other.’
      • ‘But when the economy turned down and times got tough they raised interest charges to penal levels.’
      • ‘Her task is to bring together directors to share their knowledge and experiences, when times are tough as well as good.’
      • ‘Although Crook had a tough time in his teens, he insists it did not traumatise him.’
      • ‘These are trying times for patients with chronic musculoskeletal pain.’
      • ‘She is over it, she says, but she resents what the whole nightmarish time did to her parents.’
      • ‘That's the thing about Diamond, he's experienced the bad times but he's unbowed.’
      situation, state of affairs, experience, life, way of life
      View synonyms
  • 5times(following a number) expressing multiplication.

    ‘eleven times four is forty-four’
    • ‘You see, the average annual rainfall in Paris is nearly three times as high as in London.’
    • ‘The normal chaos that most people go through you do ten times as much every day, and it gets very stressful.’
    • ‘After eight rounds they were pressing each other 14 times harder than they did at the start.’
    • ‘You need to be fit because anything you do at that altitude is three times more difficult than normal.’
    • ‘Blood flow velocity in the common femoral vein is 20 times less in the sitting than in the supine position.’
    • ‘So points on the spiral are 1.618 times as far from the centre after a quarter-turn.’
    • ‘In ovarian cancer, one cycle of topotecan costs over 10 times more than a cycle of cisplatin.’
    • ‘Seen from a million times further away, quite different kinds of structures and regularities may appear.’
    • ‘The large rectangle ABDF is the same shape as CDFH, but is phi times as large.’
    • ‘The green line is 101 times as long as the blue height and the red line is too.’
    • ‘Thus if we are given a cube with side a and want to construct a cube b of a times the volume, we need to construct the cube of side x.’
    • ‘Today's been a thousand times harder to cope with than the accident.’
    • ‘Lastly, nursing home residents were almost three times as likely to receive a laxative as those living at home.’
    • ‘Double the length of each side of the field and you find that you can grow four times as much of the crop as before.’
    • ‘The relative mortality within one year was 3.1 times higher in patients than in controls.’
    • ‘As a result, you might get two or three times as much medicine as your doctor prescribed.’
    • ‘Next the leftmost column is multiplied by 5 and then the middle column is subtracted as many times as possible.’
    • ‘Each digit we place to the left gets a value 10 times as great as the one to the right.’
  • 6mass noun The rhythmic pattern of a piece of music, as expressed by a time signature.

    ‘tunes in waltz time’
    • ‘In compound time, the beat unit is always a dotted note value.’
    • ‘Music in waltz time had come to England from the Continent in the late 1790s.’
    rhythm, tempo, beat, pulse, flow
    View synonyms
    1. 6.1 The tempo at which a piece of music is played or marked to be played.
      • ‘The music is written in 3/4 time, which means there are three beats to a bar of music.’
      • ‘Reels are written in 2/4 time.’


  • 1with object and adverbial or infinitive Plan, schedule, or arrange when (something) should happen or be done.

    ‘the first track race is timed for 11.15’
    ‘the bomb had been timed to go off an hour later’
    • ‘A bus service into the town centre is timed to coincide with all incoming flights.’
    • ‘The President's speech was timed to coincide with the opening of markets in Asia.’
    • ‘We have timed the opening to coincide with the run-up to Christmas and it seems to be paying dividends.’
    • ‘The raids were timed to coincide with a parallel operation by the South African police service in Durban this morning.’
    • ‘They said their protest was timed to coincide with both Valentine's Day and the anti-war march in London today.’
    • ‘It's just a matter of timing your visit to coincide with when the lily is in flower.’
    • ‘The initiative is timed to coincide with the start of summer and the Euro 2004 football tournament, which will see more people attracted to the town centre.’
    • ‘The event was timed to coincide with a World Bank meeting in Washington tomorrow, where finance ministers from across the world will discuss aid for basic education.’
    • ‘The publication of the list was apparently timed to coincide with the launch of a website that promises to sell every book of poetry in the English language over the internet.’
    • ‘I even timed my departure to coincide with Easter Holidays.’
    • ‘All up the game was obviously timed to coincide with the movie release but in reality those familiar with the comics will feel more at home.’
    • ‘It's reasonable to guess that the bombings were timed to coincide with the G8 summit.’
    • ‘It was believed the man timed his protest to coincide with the Labour Party Spring Conference.’
    • ‘The conference was timed to coincide with the annual meeting of the International Labor Organization.’
    • ‘Why is it that so many of your government's mega constructions are timed to coincide with an election year?’
    • ‘Union officials continue to negotiate with the employers at a regional level but the action is timed to coincide with other walkouts across London.’
    • ‘Demolition was deliberately timed to coincide with the English school holidays to minimise the distress to youngsters.’
    • ‘Easter Sunday, a time of hope and joy is timed to coincide with the Sunday following the first full moon of the vernal equinox.’
    • ‘Tellingly, Nicol's last trip to British shores was timed to coincide with the Liverpool former players' annual gathering.’
    • ‘Its opening was timed to coincide with the City of Bradford exhibition which was held for several months in Lister Park.’
    schedule, set, set up, arrange, organize, fix, fix up, fix a time for, book, line up, slot in, prearrange, timetable, bill, programme, plan
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Perform (an action) at a particular moment.
      ‘Williams timed his pass perfectly from about thirty yards’
      • ‘His answer was too perfectly timed, as if he had rehearsed it over and over again.’
      • ‘Pacing is crucial, the set ups must be executed without fault, and the payoff has to be timed perfectly in order to give life to the humor.’
      • ‘His cursing was imaginative and perfectly timed, and he put down many a student who deserved it.’
      • ‘Russell's perfectly timed lob into the path of John Joe Maguire saw the Town striker break the offside trap and pull clear of the defence.’
      • ‘Winger Mark Wallace covered across and caught Owen but the fullback's perfectly timed pass found Calland in support and he ran clear to score.’
      • ‘The events of the next few seconds could not have been timed or performed better by the Blue Angels.’
      • ‘And we'll hit it again, perfectly timed, just as the tide turns and the crowd has disappeared.’
      • ‘Dolan admitted Alcide's strike, only his second following his £80,000 switch from Hull, was perfectly timed.’
      • ‘Last night it began, perfectly timed on Christmas eve, to snow.’
      • ‘That defining moment's arrival is timed perfectly by the production crew, and the cast and director build up to it with superb skill.’
      • ‘As Liston pawed out with a series of jabs Martin timed the last one perfectly and came over the top with a crunching overhand right.’
      • ‘Aftab Habib was run out, but Ackerman's 127-ball innings proved to be perfectly timed - just.’
      • ‘It is both a private decision and a public one - and perfectly timed.’
      • ‘To square it at impact, their extreme forearm rotation must be timed perfectly on the downswing.’
      • ‘The blond full-back's pass to Paulse was perfectly timed and the wing made the 22 remaining metres with something to spare.’
      • ‘Just look at the perfectly timed run he made that led to a goal for Brett Emerton in the 1-0 win over Charlton the other week.’
      • ‘Perfectly timed for the coming cold comes a dose of relief for us northerners.’
      • ‘The event took place near Norfolk, Virginia, and was perfectly timed.’
      • ‘A king's day had to be perfectly timed so that the officers serving the monarch knew exactly what they should do, when, and how.’
      • ‘Wilkinson's mature performance with perfectly timed passes and Tig's energy helped to secure the 19-7 win.’
      regulate, adjust, calculate, set, synchronize
      View synonyms
  • 2with object Measure the time taken by (a process or activity, or a person doing it)

    ‘we were timed and given certificates according to our speed’
    with clause ‘I timed how long it took to empty that tanker’
    • ‘Each competitor rides the initial lap blind and is strictly timed during a special stage of each lap as well as during the entire lap itself.’
    • ‘These are timed games against the clock - the faster you play, the higher you score.’
    • ‘Crews will be started on the Ouse at ten second intervals and be timed over the 3000 metre course.’
    • ‘This was to make sure any potential event could be timed to the nearest thousandth of a second.’
    • ‘Two police constables armed with a stopwatch had timed her between two measured points in Stirton and found she was travelling at 21 mph.’
    • ‘Thirty to 50 mph is timed at an acceptable 8.2 seconds, and top speed is 89 mph.’
    • ‘To resolve the embarrassing issue, the two competitors were officially timed at 55.2 seconds.’
    • ‘The idea is that you raise the heart rate and time how fast it returns to normal.’
    • ‘I can remember hearing about the time when they went for their training and had to be timed running to a tap to fill the buckets, then running back again as fast as possible.’
    • ‘Sprinting in from the Wynberg end, his second over was timed as the fastest ever seen, climaxing with the first 100 mph-plus ball to be recorded.’
    • ‘The company handled the expense of having the event timed as an official record.’
    • ‘The Guinness Book of Records states a number of players at amateur level have scored within about three seconds of the kick-off, though none have been officially timed.’
    • ‘While most prospects for the Breeders' Cup races had no timed workouts on Saturday, a trio of candidates tuned up at Churchill Downs.’
    • ‘Chris even ventured out and tried his skipping skills while he was timed by 1983 world athletics champion, Eamon Coughlan.’
    • ‘His actual speed was measured using equipment which timed him between two points.’
    • ‘The event will be timed and, in the event of a tie, the most expensive mountain bike will be deemed the winner.’
    • ‘The majority of missions will be timed, but this won't be a really tight limit by any means.’
    • ‘How events presumably known only by their results can be timed so exactly is a miracle in itself.’
    • ‘This process should be timed carefully: too short and there will be no base flavour, too long and it will overpower.’
    measure, put a stopwatch on, meter, count
    View synonyms
  • 3time outComputing
    with object (of a computer or a program) cancel an operation automatically because a predefined interval of time has passed without a certain event happening.

    ‘connections are timed out when they're not in use’
    no object ‘some networks will time out if they don't see activity going to the printer’
    • ‘Connection timed out when trying to access System Tab.’
    • ‘Unfortunately some customers were timed out of the website and found that when they attempted to continue with their transaction, the six-digit code was no longer valid.’
    • ‘Host B will start a process and eventually time it out.’
    1. 3.1time out (of an operation) be cancelled automatically because a predefined interval of time has passed without a certain event happening.


  • about time

    • Used to convey that something now happening or about to happen should have happened earlier.

      ‘it's about time I came clean and admitted it’
      • ‘It's about time the general public started to redevelop a sense of taste.’
      • ‘Is it not about time horses were taxed for using, and damaging, the roads?’
      • ‘It is about time we woke up and took note of what is happening in our world.’
      • ‘It is about time something was done for the kids on the Preston estate.’
      • ‘What's new is that the Leader of the Opposition is saying them and about time too.’
      • ‘It's about time that Labour and the Conservatives got their act together if they want our support in June.’
      • ‘Some people would say it's about time the mortgage industry was regulated.’
      • ‘So it's about time the issue of electoral reform was back on the agenda.’
      • ‘Isn't it about time that they put some thought into the long-term future of the games?’
      • ‘It's about time we sorted a sensible compromise and not a draconian law.’
  • against time

    • With utmost speed, so as to finish by a specified time.

      ‘he was working against time’
      • ‘Rescuers were racing against time last night to haul up a mini-submarine stuck 190 metres underwater near the Pacific coast before the seven sailors on board run out of air.’
      • ‘After a lull when almost everyone raced against time preparing to write an epitaph for the written word, there is resurgence in the reading habit.’
      • ‘Moynihan, of course, continues with his race against time.’
      • ‘Council chiefs know they face a multi-million-pound race against time to bring their housing stock into line with the Government's Decent Home Standard.’
      • ‘And, like the species in the museum, they are battling against time.’
      • ‘For a man so fond of speed, racing against time was probably a game that this Bollywood actor had no difficulty mastering.’
      • ‘Printing blunders have left councils across the north west racing against time to make sure the all-postal ‘super election’ is a success.’
      • ‘Yorkshire League groundsmen face another race against time this year, after this week's deluge threatened to wash out the first games of the new millennium.’
      • ‘She now faces a desperate race against time to raise about $5,000 to try to bring her son home to York.’
      • ‘The conservative establishment is carrying out its rear-guard fight in the courts and mosques - a battle against time that is bound to fail.’
  • all the time

    • Constantly or very frequently.

      ‘the airfield was in use all the time’
      • ‘You can't uproot your family and buy a new house when there's talk of closure all the time.’
      • ‘Are we doing it all the time? If not, then why not?’
      constantly, the entire time, around the clock, day and night, night and day, morning, noon, and night, day in, day out, at all times, always, without a break, ceaselessly, endlessly, incessantly, perpetually, permanently, interminably, unceasingly, continuously, continually, eternally, unremittingly, remorselessly, relentlessly
      View synonyms
  • at one time

    • In or during a known but unspecified past period.

      ‘she was a nurse at one time’
      • ‘Hallim recalled he was so badly stung at one time that he had to be hospitalised.’
      • ‘The ferry crew commented that it was the biggest number of dolphins they had seen together at one time in Scapa Flow.’
      • ‘It had, at one time, been in the special medical collection of the Marylebone Public Library.’
      • ‘Chris has roots in the Kilmead area as some of his relatives resided at Moatfield at one time.’
      • ‘Energy supply has been a huge issue in the past and at one time we considered the nuclear fuel option.’
      • ‘Frustrating Russian ambitions in that part of the world had been almost our only raison d'être at one time.’
      • ‘We managed to prevent the fire spreading to a caravan park, which was a concern at one time.’
      • ‘It includes old railway arches which, at one time, formed a part of Leigh station.’
      • ‘I did at one time, and it seemed that everyone I knew, apart from my parents, did.’
      • ‘I did ponder at one time whether it would be a good idea to put together a contract of expectations for choir members.’
      formerly, previously, once, in the past, at one point, at some point, once upon a time, time was when, in days gone by, in times gone by, in times past, in the old days, in the good old days, back in the day, long ago
      View synonyms
  • at the same time

    • 1Simultaneously; at once.

      ‘answer the telephone promptly and try to pick up a pencil and notepad at the same time’
      • ‘However, I can't seem to debug both Flex and Java at the same time. It's either one or the other.’
      • ‘Study at the same time every day.’
      simultaneously, at once, at one and the same time, at the same instant, at the same moment, concurrently, concomitantly
      simultaneously, at the same instant, at the same moment, together, all together, as a group, at once, at one and the same time, at one time, concurrently, concomitantly, alongside each other, in unison, in concert, in chorus
      View synonyms
    • 2Nevertheless (used to introduce a fact that should be taken into account)

      ‘I can't really explain it, but at the same time I'm not convinced’
      • ‘I will follow this traditional method of teaching, yet at the same time I have developed a new thrust in using it.’
      • ‘But at the same time, I have to say sorry again because I cannot help hurting your feelings.’
      nevertheless, nonetheless, even so, however, but, still, yet, though, be that as it may, for all that, in spite of everything, in spite of that, despite everything, despite that, after everything, having said that, just the same, all the same, in any event, come what may, at any rate, notwithstanding, regardless, anyway, anyhow
      View synonyms
  • at a time

    • Separately in the specified groups or numbers.

      ‘he took the stairs two at a time’
      • ‘The hostel houses six people for up to six months at a time, and turns away an average of one person a day.’
      • ‘After five blocks he went through the door of the hotel and climbed the stairs two at a time.’
      • ‘Now we are not talking about logistics, because there can only be one urgent claim at a time.’
      • ‘He vaulted up the stairs two at a time, and knocked on the door twice before entering.’
      • ‘We can only view parts of it at a time and have to continually update stale parts of the view.’
      • ‘I think, with practice, I may be able to relax for as much as two hours at a time by the end of the week.’
      • ‘And why would they use a bit of all of them, rather than work through them one at a time?’
      • ‘Many of them had to be winched down one at a time to the entrance to the tunnel.’
      • ‘Only a tiny part of the pattern need be printed at a time, and by looking at it you can tell where it's from.’
      • ‘At one of them we sat for over twenty minutes, crawling forward half a car's length at a time.’
      in succession, in a row, at a time, successively, consecutively, running, straight, on end, one after the other, continuously, without a break, without interruption
      View synonyms
  • at times

    • Sometimes; on occasions.

      ‘she is at times cruel and ruthless’
      • ‘The scenery was breathtaking and it was a very enjoyable walk if a little gruelling at times.’
      • ‘Though, at times, they can provide clues as to who we are and what we might become.’
      • ‘Depression has at times locked me within my house, once for a period of six weeks.’
      • ‘We have had several cars driving far too close, almost on our bumper bar at times.’
      • ‘It got very boring at times so every now and again Martin would let me read out some of the code and he would type it out.’
      • ‘So the next morning, you put an arm around him, something every player needs at times.’
      • ‘It has been quite tear-jerking at times because we are all like one big happy family.’
      • ‘It just gets way too tiring at times and once in a while you do wish for some reprieve from it.’
      • ‘So comparisons are a bit invidious at times and I realise why we struggle with that.’
      • ‘They actually demand so much of themselves that they can be unfair on themselves at times.’
      sometimes, occasionally, from time to time, now and again, now and then, every now and again, every now and then, every so often, once in a while, every once in a while, on occasion, on occasions, on the odd occasion, off and on, at intervals, periodically, sporadically, spasmodically, erratically, irregularly, intermittently, by fits and starts, in fits and starts, fitfully, discontinuously, piecemeal
      View synonyms
  • before time

    • Before the due or expected time.

      • ‘With an equal drive and devotion to achieving what some would think impossible, unrealistic targets were set very early and reached well before time.’
      • ‘But I don't think there's any real excuse for those who left before time.’
      • ‘But the enchanting music is here well before time.’
      • ‘Not before time he has been served with an anti-social behaviour order.’
      • ‘Not before time, an organised effort is under way to raise the standard of management and leadership in Scotland's public sector.’
      • ‘He was very efficient and though there were 3 of us in the rickshaw instead of the usual 2, he got us to Puraniya crossing well before time.’
      premature, early, too early, too soon, before time
      View synonyms
  • behind time

    • Late.

      ‘she was now behind time and had to rush’
      • ‘‘The Port Tunnel is somewhat behind time, but it's still progressing well,’ Tobin said.’
      • ‘We were running quite a while behind time as we got to central London.’
      • ‘A company spokesman said very little silage had been cut and the season was already about three to four weeks behind time.’
      • ‘"This should be treated with urgency, because we are already behind time.’
      • ‘The council fired the company saying they were behind time and over budget.’
      • ‘If you are running behind time it is much more effective to answer all questions briefly than it is to answer a few really well.’
      • ‘Right now, there was no scope for pretence - Bhubanpati was way behind time.’
      • ‘On another occasion, fire gutted the then indoor arena one show morning, but the schedule still went ahead only a few minutes behind time.’
      • ‘There were some delays and various problems over the years resulted in the project being very much behind time.’
      • ‘We arrived at York station 11 minutes behind time.’
      late, not on time, behind, behind schedule, behind target, behindhand, delayed, running late, overdue, belated, tardy, unpunctual
      View synonyms
  • behind the times

    • Not aware of or using the latest ideas or techniques; out of date.

      ‘the children considered dad to be behind the times’
      • ‘And it's a sign that whatever his great accomplishments in the past, the guy is behind the times.’
      • ‘And forgive me for noting that those who would complain of lengthy deployments and demand the return of the troops are about 10 years behind the times.’
      • ‘I think if you're behind the times, you've failed.’
      • ‘Sharman said the entertainment companies are behind the times and don't realize that consumers need not buy CDs, DVDs or videotapes to enjoy music or films.’
      • ‘Coming home, our estate seemed poor to me, behind the times; a real antique.’
      • ‘We've done a little research, and that revealed we were a little behind the times with our methods.’
      • ‘The Rail Passengers Committee believes companies are behind the times and need to get up to date.’
      • ‘I was thinking that maybe I am just behind the times.’
      • ‘If we fail to appoint a management team that is capable of moving with modern ideas, we will end up not three years behind the times but ten.’
      • ‘Compare online shopping: in Europe it is not as widespread as in the U.S. and not simply because Europeans are backwards or behind the times.’
      old-fashioned, outmoded, out of fashion, out of date, unfashionable, frumpish, frumpy, out of style, outdated, dated, out, outworn, old, former, dead, musty, old-time, old-world, behindhand, past, bygone, archaic, obsolescent, obsolete, ancient, antiquated, superannuated
      View synonyms
  • call time on

    • Announce or signal the end of (an activity)

      ‘she has decided to call time on her tennis career’
      • ‘The café bar currently calls time at 11 pm, roughly when the venue's nightly gig ends.’
      • ‘He shrugged off suggestions that he would call time on his career.’
      • ‘It took the ref a while to react and call time.’
      • ‘A trade union has severed its 30-year ties and called time on an annual conference that brought hundreds of people and vital finance to the struggling resort.’
      • ‘The stunning actress called time on her engagement to the handsome actor after he blamed her for his infidelity.’
      • ‘He will then call time on a 14-year career.’
  • for the time being

    • For the present; until some other arrangement is made.

      • ‘The meeting also raises hopes that job action in the province is finished for the time being.’
      • ‘But there are ways in which the amount liable can be reduced - at least for the time being.’
      • ‘The tower has been redundant since the 1970s, but it will stay for the time being.’
      • ‘He has decided not to make any attempt to help improve things in his native country for the time being.’
      • ‘This is the review that recommended no more universities in Ireland for the time being.’
      • ‘A meeting of Skipton Rural Council decided to cease offering council houses for the time being.’
      • ‘This all points to a company that intends to remain mutually - owned, for the time being at least.’
      • ‘However, he agreed to continue for the time being until a new secretary was appointed.’
      • ‘It's been good enough for the time being and I haven't been looking actively for a replacement.’
      • ‘Visions of a new car park at a well-loved Lancaster beauty spot have been blocked at least for the time being.’
      for now, for the moment, for the present, in the interim, for the nonce, for the meantime, in the meantime, in the meanwhile
      View synonyms
  • give someone the time of day

    • usually with negativeBe pleasantly polite or friendly to someone.

      ‘I wouldn't give him the time of day if I could help it’
      • ‘The band's been sending copies to anyone who would give them the time of day, and the usual lackluster attitude turns to dust soon after.’
      • ‘When you're invisible to the establishment, you tend to gravitate towards those who will give you the time of day.’
      • ‘Our third parties are considered by the majority to be on the fringes and the mainstream media won't give them the time of day so new or different ideas are not welcome and suppressed.’
      • ‘He was a self-motivated man who'd always give you the time of day.’
      • ‘He'd heard my accent and decided there was no point giving me the time of day.’
      • ‘I wonder why people are so shocked, and sometimes scared when I don't mind giving them the time of day.’
      • ‘Want to make your dream girl or dream boy, the one who will not give you the time of day, fall head over heels in love with you?’
      • ‘I usually don't even give them the time of day - I pretend to be foreign or just ignore them…’
      • ‘But while many no longer give them the time of day, there are some who still believe if you take care of the pennies, the pounds take care of themselves.’
      • ‘But the great thing is she will be so mad at you that she won't give you the time of day.’
  • half the time

    • As often as not.

      ‘he's so clever, half the time I can't keep up with him’
      • ‘He sits in the adjacent cubicle, and I am barely aware he's even there half the time.’
      • ‘I accomplished it in half the time as my first attempt last week and the results are more polished.’
      • ‘Hit counters don't work half the time and only record the last hundred visitors which is no good if you get more visitors than that in a day.’
      • ‘Almost half the time, rejection or delay of loans is due to insufficient documentation.’
      • ‘It certainly left me standing on the shores of the Atlantic more than half the time.’
      • ‘The thing is, half the time, my friend would stir early and hover in the groggy world of the almost-awake.’
      • ‘It would come out wrong half the time, and they would tell me to shut up.’
      • ‘All else being equal, the modern bus will pick me up half the time.’
      • ‘I now complete my journey in half the time, stress has been replaced with enjoyment and I'm saving a small fortune.’
      • ‘It's not too keen on some of my hardware, refusing to speak to my camera and refusing to even boot half the time when my card reader is plugged in.’
  • have no time for

    • 1Be unable or unwilling to spend time on.

      ‘he had no time for anything except essays and projects’
      • ‘She has no time for trivialities, and that includes worrying about what she looks like.’
      • ‘We have no time for play or at least play dates and the answer is to have families double up on free time by including everybody.’
      • ‘Stressed-Out American Women Have No Time for Sleep.’
      • ‘I had no time for that; I had to really knuckle down.’
      • ‘She rolled her eyes and kept walking, having no time for either his suggestions or his ultimatums.’
      • ‘Mostly I collect the remnants of hobbies I've lost enthusiasm for, or have managed to convince myself I have no time for.’
      • ‘In the meantime, my other modules on the Diploma course were being completely ignored, because I simply had no time for them.’
      • ‘He neglected his wives, whom he treated cruelly, and had no time for his children.’
      • ‘I leave at dawn, and I have no time for more soul searching with you.’
      • ‘He dismissed the thought; he had no time for such nonsense.’
      1. 1.1Dislike or disapprove of.
        ‘he's got no time for airheads’
        • ‘Nadwi has no time for such critics, however, dismissing them as ‘narrow minded’ and ‘unrealistic’.’
        • ‘He shows, in his book, that he has no time for what he calls ‘fix-it’ MPs with mobile phones, pagers and e-mail.’
        • ‘She has no time for the traditional view of Pakistani women spending their life tied to the family home.’
        • ‘His magazine continues to probe and document issues that the rest of the media had no time for.’
        • ‘Perceived as one of this country's most intellectual moviemakers, the Jesuit-educated, one-time history student scoffs at people who claim they have no time for the tube.’
        • ‘The hospital superintendent and staff try to extend a cordial welcome, but the Minister has no time for such trivialities.’
        • ‘He believes bullying victims live with the ordeal for years, and says he has no time for adults who brush it aside as ‘character-building’.’
        • ‘It seems that if there's one thing she has no time for, it's female newscasters who are in the job only for their looks.’
        • ‘Young people of my generation had no time for Larkin's irony and simply dismissed traditional sexual morality as a clutter of meaningless taboos.’
        • ‘He's always been clear that there are certain Republicans he likes, and others whom he has no time for.’
  • have the time

    • 1Be able to spend the time needed to do something.

      ‘she didn't have the time to look very closely’
      • ‘Will they have the time to spend coming to grips with them?’
      • ‘Who else has the time to spend on baseball everyday?’
      • ‘Whichever way you head into the fjords, you are likely to start at Bergen, and if you have the time it is worth spending a couple of days there.’
      • ‘They were expected to take care of themselves, and besides did not have the time to spend.’
      • ‘We can afford to take advantage of some of the distractions that other people dream about but just being able to, having the time and the money to do it, doesn't make us any happier.’
      • ‘Alana simply did not have the time to spend any significant amount of time with someone else, nor the energy.’
      • ‘I enjoy being among the French fans and actually having the time to be able to concentrate on the job in hand without any distractions.’
      • ‘It was part of the deal that his wife had the time to spend on the family, Sophie and Sam, and that he earned the money to support them.’
      • ‘Unfortunately I haven't had the time to spend with him that I should have.’
      • ‘During my exercise crazed days I wasn't working, so had the time to spend pumping weights and running around the aerobics arena.’
    • 2Know from having a watch what time it is.

      ‘as he gets close to me, he asks if I've got the time’
      • ‘I think the last time I wore a tie was March, and a watch is useless since your cell phone already has the time on it.’
      • ‘Everybody with a cell phone has the time on it, so they're not selling as many watches as they once did.’
      • ‘“Hey mate, have you got the time?”’
  • in (less than) no time

    • Very quickly or very soon.

      ‘the video has sold 30,000 copies in no time’
      • ‘A family of four can fill a wheelie bin in no time - even if they comply with the advice to sort and crush their rubbish.’
      • ‘The pitch was rigged in no time and we were soon at the bottom and making our way to Bridge Hall.’
      • ‘If he keeps this up, the harsh memories of last year's Leinster final will be forgotten in no time.’
      • ‘Our factory had to relocate and we were handed discharge letters in no time.’
      • ‘When my wife and I were mugged someone got a police officer in no time but we should be trying to prevent the attacks happening.’
      • ‘Otherwise, it may well find itself mopping up another banking mess in no time.’
      • ‘The police arrived in no time, but the residents would not go unless power supply was restored.’
      • ‘It was a revue all written in no time and the cast was packed with starving talent.’
      • ‘They greeted each other just like usual and in no time, Harry and Mark were on their third round of drinks.’
      • ‘A country woman appeared in no time, holding a bundle of umbrellas in her hands.’
      soon, very soon, in a second, in a minute, in a moment, in a trice, in a flash, shortly, any second, any minute, any minute now, in a short time, in an instant, in less than no time, in no time at all, in next to no time, before you know it, before long
      View synonyms
  • in one's own time

    • 1At a time and a rate decided by oneself.

      ‘the desire of the child to be free to do things, to create in his own way and in his own time’
      • ‘Many specialist shops sell vouchers allowing the recipient to make a selection in their own good time.’
      • ‘Mrs Rafferty said indifferently, ‘I reckon you'll tell me in your own good time.’’
      • ‘It's my decision and I have made it in my own good time and not as a result of any undue pressure.’
      • ‘It doesn't require a brilliant business brain to work out that the best possible scenario for Texaco would be to get vacant possession and deal with Mr Mulvey in their own good time and on their terms.’
      • ‘If kids are developing their own techno-literacy in their own good time, then shouldn't education be about giving them some deep and profound ideas about what to do with all these 21st century skills?’
      • ‘Fitzgerald will let us know where he thinks the truth lies in his own good time.’
      • ‘We will proceed in a logical sequence, in our own good time, and with a reasonable amount of money spent each year over many years.’
      • ‘Even better, lay them gently on the ground, and let them come to in their own good time.’
      • ‘Instead, they would do well to find an occupation that doesn't depend for its pursuit on the patronage of the young - writing, gardening, anything that you can do on your own and in your own good time.’
      • ‘My only comfort is knowing that he will deal with them all in his own good time.’
    • 2Outside working hours; without being paid.

      ‘I painted mostly in my own time’
      • ‘In addition to the sewing they've done on their own time, the quilt volunteers have been joining their efforts two evenings each month at the historical society's Fulton House headquarters in New Derry.’
      • ‘Are staff permitted to use your power boats on their own time?’
      • ‘You can take courses on your own schedule, you can do it on your own time - all of that has tremendous appeal to students who are older, students with jobs and families.’
      • ‘Most departments required them to complete the survey on their own time, outside of work.’
      • ‘‘If he does it on his own time and does not compromise his official duties in some way, I don't see the problem,’ the judge said in an e-mail message.’
      • ‘Kids were kicked out of athletics, expelled from school, tested, forced into treatment and community service, and even jailed for having a quiet beer on their own time.’
      • ‘I don't dispute an employer's right to tell you what to do during work hours, and I suppose they have the right to contract for control over even the opinions you express on your own time.’
      • ‘I think it's a basic American right that, when you leave the workplace, when you punch out, you're on your own time.’
      • ‘Berkeley students aren't getting written homework assignments because teachers are refusing to grade work on their own time after two years with no pay raise.’
      • ‘And in a comment sure to set off a firestorm, Kaplan said faculty should attend professional conferences on their own time.’
  • in time

    • 1Not late; punctual.

      ‘I came back in time for Molly's party’
      • ‘The service will be launched at the end of the summer in time for the winter surge, but registration begins next week.’
      • ‘The organisers of the protest now face a desperate rush over the next month to ensure that they are ready in time for the summit.’
      • ‘The referee was caught in traffic and did not make it in time for kick-off.’
      • ‘Her surgeon and trainer both said she would have to drop some 20 kilos in order to heal in time for the Olympics.’
      • ‘Cultivating a much sharper fielding side in time for 2007 is high on his list.’
      • ‘His overdraft limit has just been raised to £1,250 in time for the start of his second year.’
      • ‘The work will take six months, but should be ready in time for next summer, when the team hope to be on location at Loch Ness.’
      • ‘It is hoped the repairs and redecoration will be completed by May, well in time for the expected royal visit.’
      • ‘It is thanks to this additional work that phase one of the roadworks is now scheduled to end in time for the Christmas rush.’
      • ‘She wanted him to settle down and become a coalman, home in time for tea.’
      early enough, in good time, punctually, promptly, on time, not too late, with time to spare, at the appointed time, at the right time, on schedule
      View synonyms
    • 2Eventually.

      ‘there is the danger that he might, in time, not be able to withstand temptation’
      • ‘Chloe should, in time, give thanks for her deliverance from corporate clutches.’
      • ‘They'll skip it in time, tuning in only to the rage around the resplendence.’
      • ‘The tunes would come in time, but Flowers dealt with the wardrobe issue almost immediately.’
      • ‘One thing we can say about this starting value is that it must be very specially tuned if galaxies are to form in time.’
      • ‘Again, they will in time be able to exercise some kind of supervision.’
      • ‘However, it is hoped that the BBC will in time be able to expand its contribution.’
      eventually, ultimately, finally, in the end, as time goes by, as time goes on, by and by, one day, some day, sooner or later, in a while, after a bit, in the long run, in the fullness of time, when all is said and done, at a later time, at a later date, at length, at a future date, at a future time, at some point in the future, in the future, in time to come, in due course
      View synonyms
    • 3In accordance with the appropriate musical rhythm or tempo.

      • ‘It is likely too that the cost of movies in digital format will reduce in time, according to Cummins.’
      • ‘This is one way of ensuring that the music will be played exactly in time.’
      • ‘All were well spaced, in time with the music and in tune with each other.’
      • ‘Powerful drums in time like a metronome lead the way for trashy angular bass lines and wry energetic vocals.’
      • ‘To release your physical tensions, march in time to the music as you are singing.’
      • ‘Daniel shook his head and began to move my arms backwards and forwards, in time with the music.’
      • ‘You can tell because the lamp posts outside are jumping in time to the bass line.’
      • ‘Those razor sharp hips sliced the air as he moved in time to the music.’
      • ‘A couple of horses grazed nearby, their tails swinging in time to the rhythm.’
      • ‘An articulated lorry pulled up alongside someway in time to the classical music on the radio.’
  • keep good (or bad) time

    • 1(of a clock or watch) record time accurately (or inaccurately).

      • ‘Frustrated that it doesn't keep good time, Jerry throws a watch his parents gave him into a trash can on the street.’
      • ‘So it was a privilege for me to be get up close to see the ingenious workings of Harrison's magnificent clock, still keeping good time, nearly 300 years after it was made.’
      • ‘At the top of the street is the old town hall clock, dating from 1891, which is well maintained and keeps good time.’
      • ‘Most atomic clocks are actually not used to keep time the way a clock on the wall keeps time. They're most useful in measuring the amount of time that has elapsed in a laboratory.’
      • ‘The owner found nothing wrong with his watch, for it still kept time correctly, so Quentin leaves.’
      • ‘It was a matter of pride to possess a clock that kept good time and people went to great lengths to secure it.’
      • ‘Officials from the town hall were called in to investigate and promised that the clock would be keeping good time again as soon as possible.’
      • ‘The bus driver, passengers, nor the bus, moved to see if they could help the bleeding man who had golden glossy eyes, wet dark hair, a thousand dollar beige suit, and a watch that still kept good time.’
      • ‘It was a just a simple watch of course, intended for the wrist of a young child, but it had a quartz crystal and it kept good time and that was what mattered most.’
      • ‘As the metaphor implies, newer is not necessarily better, and the grandfather clock is still keeping good time.’
      • ‘It certainly kept time well enough while we were testing it, and continues to do so.’
      • ‘Those first clocks hardly kept time better than the sun dials and water clocks they replaced.’
      • ‘Since the late fifteenth century, humans have been devising elegant and innovative technologies for measuring and mapping Earth, navigating, keeping time, and observing the heavens.’
      • ‘The movement - the mechanism that keeps time - can include hundreds of parts.’
      • ‘Here's the latest in integrated personal technology: A watch that keeps time and pays at the pump!’
    • 2(of a person) be habitually punctual (or not punctual).

      • ‘In law firms this is of particular importance as firms are looking for people who are able to keep time well as their whole income depends upon it.’
      • ‘Shallow water is the best place to find and catch barble and they normally move into these areas at about 10am although they do not keep time well.’
  • keep time

    • Play or rhythmically accompany music in time.

      • ‘A simple man, clothed if not in rags then certainly not far from it, he tramps his way along the street, feet keeping time to the music, intent on his playing.’
      • ‘Well, the bass is a very functional instrument and it keeps good time.’
      • ‘However, at most music shows these days, organisers and security personnel don't seem to mind exuberant youngsters climbing onto their chairs, just to wave and sway, keeping time to the music.’
      • ‘An eerie synth dances with reverb-heavy guitar, while a simplistic, cool bass line keeps time with a snare.’
      • ‘She was forcing herself to move, forcing herself to keep time with the music.’
      • ‘Christy listened as he pounded out the difficult riff, keeping good time and only slipping once.’
      • ‘Nanu's feet kept time to the music and the bells strapped to his ankles chimed softly.’
      • ‘Colored dots scroll across your screen and tell you which bongo to hit to keep time with the music.’
      • ‘While busy having fun singing the songs and acting out the motions, a child is subconsciously acquiring a vocabulary of rhythms and melodies and developing the ability to sing in pitch and keep time with the music.’
      • ‘The side drum was introduced by Swiss and German mercenaries shortly before 1500 as a military instrument for keeping time on the march.’
  • lose no time

    • Do a specified thing as soon as possible.

      ‘the administration lost no time in trying to regain the initiative’
      • ‘She lost no time in removing the gag as quickly as possible.’
      • ‘Mayo, making telling use of their superior fitness, lost no time in giving the scoreboard statistics a satisfying aspect.’
      • ‘And journalists lost no time in predicting an ugly battle ahead.’
      • ‘Faced with skyrocketing petroleum prices the government has lost no time in adjusting the prices of gasoline, diesel and cooking gas upwards.’
      • ‘Professor Tribe lost no time in acknowledging the accuracy of Bottum's charge, as reported by the Harvard Crimson.’
      • ‘The authorities lost no time in alerting the people living downstream as at the pace at which the discharge was rising, flash floods could be caused even if the lake remained intact.’
      • ‘After we took the lead the travelling contingent lost no time in reminding the home fans that next season would no doubt see them sampling the delights of the local hostelries in Burnley.’
      • ‘Recently restored to the shadow cabinet, the right-winger has lost no time in pushing the traditionalists' case.’
      • ‘According to eyewitnesses, the Secretary was upset on seeing him in the T-shirt and had lost no time in venting his feelings.’
      • ‘After a year's training in the U.S. in by-pass surgery, he lost no time in working on developing a substitute that is superior to all other substitutes.’
      be quick, hurry up, move quickly, go fast, hasten, make haste, speed, speed up, lose no time, press on, push on, run, dash, rush, hurtle, dart, race, fly, flash, shoot, streak, bolt, bound, blast, charge, chase, career, scurry, scramble, scamper, scuttle, sprint, gallop, go hell for leather, go like lightning
      View synonyms
  • not before time

    • Used to convey that something now happening or about to happen should have happened earlier.

      ‘a new law is proposed to curb this type of blatantly dishonest description, and not before time’
      • ‘These new officers are not before time, but we still need more bobbies on the beat.’
      • ‘For many observers out there, it's not before time.’
      • ‘Under new legislation these firms will soon be regulated: not before time!’
      • ‘And it is not before time that he is recognised and I am absolutely delighted for him.’
      • ‘These changes are important, and not before time.’
      • ‘‘Well done Peter’, we all say, and not before time!’
      • ‘The hours have been curtailed, and not before time.’
      • ‘This week the excellent work to tackle breast cancer has been highlighted, and not before time.’
      • ‘These reforms have been well signalled and, not before time, it looks as if the sector is waking up to the challenges threatening to engulf it.’
      • ‘The announcement is not before time, considering the many tedious months of procrastination and prevarication there have been over this vexed issue.’
  • no time

    • A very short interval or period.

      ‘the renovations were done in no time’
      • ‘In no time at all the fiddler was able to retrieve what was left of his leg and a great cheer went up from the dancers.’
      • ‘In no time at all there were far too many commentary posts for anyone to read them all.’
      • ‘Basically all this juggling means there is little or no time to put anything back.’
      • ‘In no time the heap had heated up so much that it was difficult to keep your hand in it for more than a few seconds.’
      • ‘It takes no time at all to prepare and is a hearty and satisfying autumn or winter meal.’
      • ‘In no time at all the firths were fishless deserts and the sea a cemetery without memorials.’
      • ‘It takes no time to scrub and debeard the things when you've got a host of hands and a few glasses of wine on the go.’
      • ‘It's also a doddle to make and takes no time to cook, especially if you grate the carrot.’
      • ‘In no time I was dragging my suitcase outside, joining my family on our journey back home.’
      • ‘In no time at all we were at Poole and after a chat and cup of tea off to bed.’
  • on time

    • Punctual; punctually.

      ‘the train was on time’
      ‘we paid our bills on time’
      • ‘Mind you, if the trains run on time they will have less than half an hour to get from the station and into the ground.’
      • ‘Immediately she took over the practical details of his life, seeing that bills get paid on time.’
      • ‘Get the trains to run on time and passengers might believe some of the other promises being made.’
      • ‘Just because you can code a reverse compiler in your sleep doesn't mean you pay your phone bill on time.’
      • ‘The pressure to reach a destination on time has serious consequences for our driving safety.’
      • ‘A huge amount of hard work goes into making sure the newspaper is published on time each and every week.’
      • ‘The train left on time and the Wallace monument rapidly faded into the distance.’
      • ‘This time, Michael is being sued for apparently not paying his vet bills on time.’
      • ‘My husband and I have always paid every bill on time but are now prepared to withhold payment.’
      • ‘Interest is normally charged at once, even if you pay the bill in full on time.’
      punctual, punctually, prompt, promptly
      punctual, punctually, prompt, promptly, in time, in good time, on schedule, to schedule, when expected, timely, well timed
      View synonyms
  • out of time

    • At the wrong time or period.

      ‘I felt that I was born out of time’
      • ‘He's a man out of time.’
      • ‘Yes, it was at first glance quaint and seemingly out of time, but it was also monumentally impressive and alive.’
      • ‘It arrived the following Monday - a day out of time.’
      • ‘They have seemed like men out of time throughout their career as parlour entertainers in the grand British tradition.’
      • ‘As we've come to expect from them, this debut is a minimal, tranquil folk album that seems to have fallen out of time.’
      • ‘His life and work existed out of time, marrying innovation to an old-time American sensibility with a singular sense of humor like precious few.’
      • ‘Half tale of an adolescent's lost innocence, half a denunciation of racial intolerance, it seems curiously out of time on the big screen now, yet is brilliantly realised as both film and politics.’
      • ‘He seems a figure born almost out of time, a figure from the English Civil War born into the early 20th century.’
      • ‘On stage, she wears white pre-Raphaelite frocks, and she confesses to being born out of time.’
      • ‘It may just make for a transporting, surreal experience: the music gave me the feeling that I was a traveller out of time, a brief visitor from another place entirely.’
  • pass the time of day

    • Exchange greetings or casual remarks.

      • ‘A few women stood chatting in the water, only their heads showing above the rippled surface - looking as natural as old ladies passing the time of day at a London bus stop.’
      • ‘They could be valued public spaces where people can enjoy the local shops, meet with neighbours and pass the time of day.’
      • ‘Another said: ‘You only see people around here when you're out walking the dog, but when you see her she always gives a big smile and passes the time of day.’’
      • ‘The market was well attended, and increasingly one sees people sitting outside under trees, passing the time of day, almost as if we were in the Continent!’
      • ‘One thinks of the shopkeepers and craftsmen in and around the Agora with whom Socrates passed the time of day.’
      • ‘Whether he was in his eighties or not, he was still handsome and charming, and obviously still liked to pass the time of day with a strange woman.’
      • ‘It was empty except for the owner who was passing the time of day with some of his acquaintances.’
      • ‘They passed the time of day, and chatted for a few minutes, as dozens, if not hundreds or more, students then went to their next classes.’
      • ‘They always passed the time of day and she always waved.’
      • ‘But I think now that he was picking up information, sizing people up, while appearing to be passing the time of day.’
  • time after time (also time and again or time and time again)

    • On very many occasions; repeatedly.

      • ‘One wonders why, after being put off time after time, she continues to persist.’
      • ‘Is this the story of violence, suffering and dashed hopes Africa is condemned to repeat time and time again?’
      • ‘The architectural importance of Ballyfin House was stressed time and time again.’
      • ‘They just repeat the old ones time and again to the end of their years.’
      • ‘Last week on a tour of the United States, he repeated this message time and again.’
      • ‘If it can be done once, then maybe it can be repeated time after time, until not a single child is left without a roof over its head.’
      • ‘A professional actor is destined to repeat the roles he had been doing time and again.’
      • ‘Basic errors are repeated time and again, despite fine words and earnest assurances to this committee.’
      • ‘Worse than that, he can get repeated migraines, going through the whole process time and again.’
      • ‘This is the pattern we have seen repeated time after time throughout history.’
      frequently, often, repeatedly, again and again, over and over, over and over again, time and again, time and time again, time after time, many times, on many occasions, many times over
      repeatedly, again and again, over and over, over and over again, time and again, time and time again, frequently, often, many times, many a time, on many occasions, many times over
      View synonyms
  • time and tide wait for no man

    • proverb If you don't make use of a favourable opportunity, you may never get the same chance again.

      • ‘‘Yes, but let's get moving; time and tide wait for no man, as the saying goes,’ offered Stilwell.’
      • ‘There was just so much more to see and do but time and tide wait for no man, and my budget was going on a diet, losing weight fast.’
      • ‘Unfortunately, as the old saying goes, time and tide wait for no man.’
      • ‘And as Geoff was fond of saying, time and tide wait for no man.’
      • ‘But time and tide wait for no man - or ship - and the vessel will be taken up the river Medway, where it will be turned into a bar and restaurant.’
  • time flies

    • Used as an observation that time seems to pass very quickly.

      ‘people say time flies when you're having fun’
      ‘my daughter started school in September—oh, how time flies’
      • ‘When I get together with my gardening friends, time flies.’
      • ‘Time flies when you're falling in love.’
      • ‘Time flies when you're speed dating, and by 10.30 pm, the official dating was over.’
      • ‘As I prepare to visit my doctor for my last check-up, I realize how quickly time flies.’
      • ‘As the saying goes, time flies when you're having fun.’
      • ‘How time flies - to me it's like yesterday since you were a teenager.’
      • ‘About three years ago - ouch, time flies - I developed a celebrity crush on a sporting hero.’
      • ‘Make the most of your leisure hours because time flies even when you're not having fun - especially if your commute is long and your workload spills into nights and weekends.’
      • ‘Time flies and before you know it, Christmas will be here!’
      • ‘Next week is my one year anniversary of breaking up with Chris. Goodness, time flies.’
  • time immemorial

    • A time in the past that was so long ago that people have no knowledge or memory of it.

      ‘markets had been held there from time immemorial’
      • ‘We are simply stating the case that males from time immemorial always contested each other as part of the growing-up process.’
      • ‘The traditional practices are the most difficult to deal with since they are about attitude and our way of life going back to time immemorial.’
      • ‘Preventing the young giving birth to babies unwanted by their parents will break a cycle of unwanted pregnancies that has gone on for time immemorial.’
      • ‘Around since time immemorial, the antiquated Granby Zoo continues to serve as a classic example of old-style zoos.’
      • ‘The explosive encounters of age-old adversaries have held a captivating magnetism for the human psyche since time immemorial.’
      • ‘These movements are accompanied by the sound of wild beating of drums, which again hasn't changed since time immemorial.’
      • ‘From time immemorial, the moon has been a fascination for mankind.’
      • ‘More often than not, Inuit used plants as tea, and various tea recipes have existed across the Arctic since time immemorial.’
      • ‘To find themselves in such a situation is out of pure disregard of a yearly phenomenon that has been uninterrupted since time immemorial.’
      • ‘Since time immemorial, India has been important for adventures, proselytizers, and marauders.’
  • time is money

    • proverb Time is a valuable resource, therefore it's better to do things as quickly as possible.

      • ‘They say time is money and your time is valuable.’
      • ‘My experience is what happens is that people just pull it down as quickly as possible, because time is money, and any possible safety problems are just completely ignored.’
      • ‘And time is money in today's fast-moving, IT-based world.’
      • ‘There he could check pipelines very quickly, in an industry where time is money.’
      • ‘Doctors can check the drugs, their doses, and the times of day to be administered.’
      • ‘But, I have to pay or there's a long delay, and I'm a businessman, so time is money,’ he said.’
      • ‘But when it comes to accumulating wealth, time is money.’
      • ‘First, since time is money for most potential home-buyers, young people do not want to waste at least two months buying construction materials or supervising unreliable workmen.’
      • ‘The biggest problem has been getting to the point of detailed plans and projections, all of which takes time - and time is money.’
      • ‘For the developed Western countries, time is money.’
  • the time of one's life

    • A period or occasion of exceptional enjoyment.

      • ‘It was a couple, their friend and four or five kids, all having the time of their lives, especially the driver, as he was chugging beer after beer.’
      • ‘There's a little kid just in front of me not older than 9-years-old absolutely having the time of his life watching the gig from the dizzy heights of his dad's shoulders.’
      • ‘He was in his element; no one was able to stop him from having the time of his life, dipping and soaring as eagles tended to do.’
      • ‘Now my personality is suited to the English game, and I'm having the time of my life.’
      • ‘Pressley is having the time of his life at club level.’
      • ‘They all seem to be having the time of their lives.’
      • ‘Ruby and Tara were having the time of their lives, watching out the window and laughing, but I didn't dare open my eyes still.’
      • ‘Thankfully, the problem of getting volunteer supervisors and helpers was sorted out and 400 children, aged from five to 12, ended up having the time of their lives.’
      • ‘And, I suspect, that, like myself, they were all having the time of their life.’
      • ‘Everyone will be having the time of their life except me!’
  • time of the month

    • euphemistic The time during which a woman or girl has her period; an occurrence of menstruation.

      ‘they assume that if I am upset about anything, it must be my time of the month’
      • ‘I used to cringe about telling him that my time of the month was due.’
      • ‘Maybe it's my time of the month or something, but I found that quite poignant and moving.’
      • ‘I am sure any sane man who had lived with a woman for 10 years would know 1) when it's her time of the month 2) when to keep his mouth closed.’
      • ‘Us girls can get really angst-y when it's our time of the month.’
      • ‘Can you imagine what your average bar or pub would be like if men had a time of the month?’
      • ‘Now I know how she feels when she can't get into her jeans during that time of the month.’
      • ‘Then my time of the month rolled around - or didn't, rather.’
      • ‘I survived about thirty-five years of it myself without calling in sick or making colossal mistakes or going postal whenever it was that time of the month.’
      • ‘Dunno, must be her time of the month or something.’
      • ‘Every woman knows the story: it's that time of the month again, and you've run out of tampons.’
  • time out of mind

    • A time in the past that was so long ago that people have no knowledge or memory of it.

      ‘from time out of mind, a wooden bridge connected the two peoples’
  • time was

    • There was a time when.

      ‘time was, each street had its own specialized trade’
      • ‘Time was when all you needed to get around in the chilly North was a fur coat, a wooden sled and a good team of dogs.’
      • ‘Time was when the big man, a steamfitter by trade, would have thought it mad folly to come to Ed Massey's for anything but a haircut.’
  • (only) time will tell

    • The truth or correctness of something will (only) be established at some time in the future.

      ‘only time will tell whether Benson is right’
      • ‘Only time will tell whether or not they will achieve their ambitions.’
      • ‘Only time will tell whether sufficiently large numbers of members agree with him.’
      • ‘Only time will tell whether the cross-cultural mix will end up lifting the roof to a higher place.’
      • ‘As for its reliability at predicting future battles, only time will tell.’
      • ‘The whole world is watching the Indian elections and only time will tell the truth.’
      • ‘Only time will tell, but the future certainly looks bright.’
      • ‘Only time will tell whether such a vision can be realised.’
      • ‘I think chivalry will exist in the future, but only time will tell.’
      • ‘As to who was telling the truth, only time will tell.’
      • ‘Of course, time will tell whether any of this will make any difference.’


Old English tīma, of Germanic origin; related to tide, which it superseded in temporal senses. The earliest of the current verb senses (dating from late Middle English) is ‘do (something) at a particular moment’.