Definition of millennial in US English:



  • 1Denoting or relating to a period of a thousand years.

    ‘the current increase in hurricanes is only a small fluctuation within this longer millennial cycle’
    • ‘Snobby people from other countries like to make fun of the U.S. for its abbreviated history and its uncouth culture, particularly compared with the millennial legacies of Europe, Africa, and Asia.’
    • ‘Climatic cooling, whether it is on a short (decadal or century) or a long (millennial) timescale, tends to cool the poles more than the tropics.’
    • ‘The millennial conversations between Mesopotamian and Greek, Islamic and European, Chinese and Western, literate and nonliterate cultures have often been complex.’
    • ‘This ageless question is at the heart of Harold's investigation of the unique capacity of organisms "to reproduce themselves indefinitely, and arise on a millennial time-scale by the interplay of variation and selection that underlies biological evolution."’
    • ‘The word "ancient," for instance, suggesting a certain millennial endurance, is repeatedly applied to Yeats's habits, opinions, and friendships, often when they are no more than fifteen or twenty years old—as though Yeats were an epoch in himself and made the terminology exact in the grandeur of proportion.’
    • ‘In the sixteenth century, Western mathematics emerged swiftly from a millennial decline.’
    • ‘Superimposed on this long-frequency / large-amplitude wavelength are smaller oscillations on millennial to annual time scales.’
    • ‘This quick millennial tour ends with more of a whimper than a bang, with Abraham Lincoln and John Paul II being chosen to represent the last two centuries.’
    • ‘Feszty originally painted it for the millennial celebration (1896).’
    • ‘Despite current uncertainties, it nonetheless remains a widespread view among paleoclimate researchers that late 20th century hemispheric-scale warmth is anomalous in a long-term (at least millennial) context, and that anthropogenic factors likely play an important role in explaining the anomalous recent warmth.’
    • ‘No expense was ever spared in the celebration of a millennial reign.’
    • ‘Consequently, brachiopod diversity, shell morphometrics, and geochemical signatures extracted from shell beds may represent records averaged over centennial to millennial timescales.’
    • ‘Less than a decade later, Martin Luther began the Reformation, and religious wars dragged Europe down to a millennial low.’
    • ‘Many also come to visit ethereal Gothic cathedrals, millennial monasteries and imposing medieval castles en route.’
    • ‘However, neither the Korean nor the millennial view is good science, and thus it is reasonable to expect these perspectives to eventually be replaced by a scientific formulation.’
    • ‘Drilling at Vostok in Antarctica has produced an outstanding record of climate and atmospheric composition on millennial to centennial time scales for the last 420,000 years (Figs. 1,7).’
    • ‘How these systems may respond to the rapid and major global warming predicted over the coming century is uncertain but largely dependent on whether coral-algal symbioses can adjust to decadal rather than millennial rates of climate change.’
  • 2Denoting or relating to an anniversary of a thousand years.

    ‘the millennial anniversary of Leif Eiriksson's voyage to the New World’
    ‘the millennial celebrations in New York's Times Square’
    • ‘Chester is a town with significant histories stretching from Roman times, through medieval England, the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and now these millennial times.’
    • ‘He describes the journey—taken in the millennial year—in his new book.’
    • ‘Of all the millennial projects, the extension of the London Underground, under the direction of Roland Paoletti, is one of the most admirable.’
    • ‘This project, contextual and pragmatic, could have been the best of a bunch of major millennial monuments in a deconstructivist style.’
    • ‘Those were my two main criteria when I set about making up a list of writers to invite to Nashville to participate in A Millennial Gathering of the Writers of the New South in April of 2000.’
    • ‘I have not seen the film, but I understand that it has become a cult favorite among those who respond to millennial nostalgia.’
    • ‘As a director, his feature debut Last Night was probably the best film version of millennial angst.’
    • ‘For its millennial show on the human figure, MoMA rearranges some familiar works in its permanent collection—with eye-opening results.’
    • ‘In the meantime, his unsettling snapshots of troubled teens capture something of the unreal nature of this millennial time.’
    • ‘His music has a sense of romanticism missing from millennial pop music.’
    • ‘The final result is a textual mapping of the telecom world around the millennial moment.’
    • ‘Located in the dusty backwater of Datong, a provincial city in northeast China, the movie depicts a global village in the throes of millennial malaise.’
    • ‘A triumph of engineering ingenuity, the Millennium Dome is the largest setpiece project of the UK's millennial programme.’
    • ‘New York is, like most other places, awash with large-scale millennial survey shows.’
    • ‘And now, in two parts, to coincide with the millennial seasons 1999-2000 and 2000-2001, comes Arthur.’
    • ‘If for nothing else, the millennial year in Britain was remarkable for an extraordinary expansion in museum construction.’
    • ‘His is in many ways (with a nasty pun) a terminal philosophy embracing millennial disillusionment.’
    • ‘Safely ensconced midway through the year 2002, any millennial tension feels like a long gone fad.’
    • ‘Carey created the work, she says, as a millennial lament and as a grieving piece for her deceased mother, brother and father.’
    • ‘To the east are wastes still largely untouched by millennial prosperity.’
    1. 2.1 Denoting people reaching young adulthood in the early 21st century.
      ‘most social networking groups are dominated by the millennial generation’
      • ‘So while low-carb beers are helping to shape the svelte images of protein-munching youth, there is another type of beer that is appealing to a Millennial subset, especially in the hip bars of urban city centers.’
      • ‘Imagine if you're the development officer now at some of these universities trying to raise money for this millennial generation.’
      • ‘Pushed to describe what general movement he witnesses among Millennial drinkers, Jacobus says, "The current generation are definitely drinking differently."’
      • ‘But she has her own distinct identity: she is the first female figurehead of America's millennial punk scene.’
      • ‘It is tempting to take the notion of a monolithic Millennial generation, cross it with a stage theory and generalize about how these students view the world and how teachers might interact with them.’
      • ‘Even more important, more than half (51%) of Millennial men are core wine drinkers.’
      • ‘Millennial young adults will vote more heavily, and be far more engaged in mainstream politics, than Gen Xers were at that age.’
      • ‘Generation X is the demographic recently described by pundits as the crest of the wave of the millennial generation (also known as Generation Y).’
      • ‘Likewise, fashions of the 1970s, which had long been deemed hideous, became the ultimate in hip, as millennial teens embraced bellbottoms, ringer T-shirts and other long-forgotten styles.’
      • ‘Speakers and participants in the session discussed generational differences between the millennial generation—beginning with people born in 1980—now hitting the workplace and workers of earlier generations.’
      • ‘Out of the sixty million strong Millennial population, it's the band of twenty-one to twenty-five year olds that marketers target with dazzling images of new drink brands.’
      • ‘In 1991, we forecast the emergence of a new generation of American youth, born after 1982, whom we then named the Millennial Generation.’
      • ‘A higher proportion of millennial adults (those 26 years of age and younger) have become core wine drinkers, more than Generation X.’
      • ‘Today's students are at the end of the Generation X era and at the beginning of the Millennial Era.’
      • ‘Every marketer defines the Gen X, Gen Y and Millennial crowds a little differently.’
      • ‘Born from 1975 to 1980, these cuspers possess an interesting mix of generation X skepticism and millennial optimism.’
      • ‘The Indiana Chapter presented Understanding, Motivating and Successfully Working with the Millennial Generation in May.’
      • ‘The still growing Millennial generation (six to 23 year-olds) will drive cheese sales well into the 21st century as more children, from toddlers to teens, "behold the power of cheese."’
      • ‘But she cautioned that what she calls the "Millennial" generation, which will be the primary purchasers 10 years from now, may set their sights elsewhere.’
      • ‘The old argument that culture represents the nation no longer washes with millennial politicians who were raised on rock music and shlock movies.’
  • 3

    another term for millenarian
    • ‘The period of the Father, of the Law, and of the Old Testament was succeeded by the epoch of the Son, of Devotion, and of the New Testament, to be in turn succeeded by the millennial triumph of the Holy Ghost, the age of the Spirit.’
    • ‘We also went through a spate of "millennial" thinking, that quirky habit of the mind which finds special significance in numbers of years, and gets exaggerated as the numbers become portentous.’
    • ‘It was composed and published in a crucial period of European apocalyptic anxiety and millennial anticipation.’
    • ‘It is millennial in the sense that the groups involved are oriented to a future good society.’
    • ‘Joachim of Fiore saw the millennial pattern of apocalypse as the very pattern of providential history itself.’
    • ‘It is not surprising then that the Romantic poets, and Blake in particular, conceived of the French and American Revolutions in millennial terms; the violence and upheaval of these events seemed to mark the dawn of a new earthly order, freeing man from the tyranny of monarchy and church.’
    • ‘He highlights a history of such values going back as far as the millennial heretics of the fourteenth century.’
    • ‘It is true that authorities feared he was a potential leader of a millennial revolt and they treated him leniently lest he become a martyr.’
    • ‘Before being realized, a millennial world of social harmony on earth first had to be imagined and expressed.’
    • ‘Perfectionist pacifists believed that those who, like themselves, adhered to God's laws would achieve Christian perfection and therefore gain immediate entrance to God's millennial kingdom.’
    • ‘It's just to suggest that self-indulgent utopianism—millennial thinking—is less an expression of the longing for transcendence than a perversion of it.’
    • ‘Robinson gets around the narrow and undemocratic implications of sci-fi's traditional rule of scientists and engineers by making everyone on Mars a scientist or engineer—an elect lifted to heaven (a millennial trope utopianism can't seem to live without).’
    • ‘It proved not to be the dawn of a new millennial age of 'vital religion' in Scotland, as its perpetrators had hoped.’
    • ‘The nation itself came to be seen in a providential or even millennial light.’
    • ‘She was one such unconventional religious leader; her philosophy included millennial beliefs.’
    • ‘A single man's failure endangers the whole community, their millennial mission, and their covenant with God.’
    • ‘The defeat of 1940 fitted easily into this millennial scheme, and allowed him to relativize its long-term importance.’
    • ‘Such spiritual inventions as goddesses are said to have nurtured and sustained the people in their millennial national history of overcoming natural obstacles and military invasions.’
    • ‘Indeed, visionary writers like William Blake, while tending to apocalyptic or millennial climaxes, continually undermine our sense of the reality of the world and of ourselves in ways that are both archaic and postapocalyptic.’
    • ‘Newton's millenarian enthusiasm, based upon the deeply held notion that human history was orchestrated by God, was matched later in the century by the millennial speculations of the high priest of rational Dissent, Joseph Priestley.’


  • A person reaching young adulthood in the early 21st century.

    ‘the industry brims with theories on what makes millennials tick’
    ‘another distinguishing feature of Millennials is that they come to college from a lifestyle that was highly scheduled’
    • ‘Even by the low standards of his party, he has underperformed at reaching millennials in the thriving culture where they live.’
    • ‘Millennials also like to build elements of community into their businesses.’
    • ‘But I hear this sentiment more and more from the Millennials and from older people, too.’
    • ‘Unlike the Baby Boomers, who are largely individualistic and anti-establishment, the Millennials are good team players.’
    • ‘Another distinguishing feature of Millennials is that they come to college from a lifestyle that was highly scheduled.’
    • ‘Studying the characteristics of Millennials helps educators understand how today's college generation may be different from previous ones.’
    • ‘Boomers are more process oriented while Xers and Millennials are known to be questioning generations.’
    • ‘You can also take some comfort in the fact that Millennials are builders, not destroyers.’
    • ‘Well, there are a lot of struggles on the part of managers and millennials in the workplace.’
    • ‘Millennials are capable of participating in mainstream politics, unlike Gen Xers, who believed in splinter parties.’
    • ‘The industry brims with theories on what makes millennials tick.’
    • ‘I think the parents of baby boomers were much more patient than baby boomers and I think the millennials have no patience.’
    • ‘Millennials are used to getting feedback instantaneously—at the touch of a button.’
    • ‘Mentoring is especially important to Xers and Millennials who usually welcome the opportunity to learn from an experienced advisor.’
    • ‘One Millennial in tight jeans and a studded belt, just changed from a shirt and tie for the ceremony, told us how his admiration of the antiwar stance inspired him to organize punk rock fundraisers for the governor.’
    • ‘We know that the generation immediately preceding the Millennials is struggling.’
    • ‘But rising Millennials will be encouraged to build more than reflect.’
    • ‘Millennials are defined as the generation born after 1982.’
    • ‘As I have said before in this space, I have fathered 3 boomers, 2 Gen X'ers and 1 Millennial.’
    • ‘We live in a world where our children are millennials.’