Definition of oncoming in US English:



  • 1attributive Approaching; moving toward.

    ‘she walked into the path of an oncoming car’
    • ‘Grogan advises drivers to pull over when oncoming cars approach.’
    • ‘Anyone who has rushed to get across a Hong Kong street in front of oncoming traffic knows that moving on two feet can be dangerous here.’
    • ‘Police are unsure why Collins apparently ignored properly functioning warning signals and drove his car in front of the oncoming train.’
    • ‘‘They're doing a good job of it,’ Adam said as Hannah swerved dangerously close to an oncoming car.’
    • ‘A police spokesman said the Clio is believed to have careered out of control and mounted the roadside kerb before catapulting across the road towards oncoming traffic and ploughing into the van.’
    • ‘I can't even imagine why he would actually, purposely, try to jump in front of an oncoming car.’
    • ‘The car overtook as it approached a blind bend and the oncoming car on the other side of the road had to swerve on to the verge to avoid a collision.’
    • ‘But see, when the oncoming car approached, I had to make a decision over the alternatives available to me.’
    • ‘I slammed on my brakes and the back of the oncoming car came to a halt inches from the front of my scooter.’
    • ‘He was backing now directly toward the oncoming cars.’
    • ‘A similar incident took place at the 2000 German Grand Prix at Hockenheim when a spectator wandered around the course and crossed the track in front of oncoming cars.’
    • ‘As I turned left onto a narrow street that leads to my home, a woman in a parked car on a cell phone opened her car door into the line of traffic, directly in front of my oncoming car.’
    • ‘Sansak had tried to avoid the checkpoint, making a U-turn in front of the oncoming car.’
    • ‘The suicidal Beatrice who is now ready to step intentionally in front of an oncoming car picks out a man across the street to focus her resolve.’
    • ‘Now reaching the bottom of the steps Henry vaults across the street in front of an oncoming car and forces it to jam the brakes.’
    • ‘I tossed the wrench in front of an oncoming car, and it ran over it, bending the handle.’
    • ‘I followed her gaze and nearly jumped in front of an oncoming car.’
    • ‘Two cars collided and another careened across in front of oncoming traffic and it was really a bad scene.’
    • ‘His 22-year-old brother was thrown in front of an oncoming car, which narrowly missed him after the driver swerved.’
    • ‘Opal ran after them, shooting the front tire of an oncoming police car sending it spinning out of control.’
    approaching, advancing, coming, nearing, arriving, onrushing
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Due to happen or occur in the near future.
      ‘the oncoming Antarctic winter’
      • ‘She smiled wryly to herself, thinking that perhaps he, like the local songbirds and crows, had flown south to avoid the oncoming winter.’
      • ‘For a moment, I thought that Mom had decided to bring in a hot pad because of oncoming winter.’
      • ‘Taiwan battens down against oncoming typhoon.’
      • ‘Yital wanted to know, ignoring her comment about the chill of the oncoming winter.’
      • ‘In a descriptive passage that recalls Pickthall's poetry, the story attributes a pre-verbal understanding of the signs of the oncoming winter to both men.’
      • ‘New data hint at oncoming cocaine epidemic.’
      • ‘The air outside was chill, sign of the oncoming winter, though there was still no snow.’
      • ‘Most of the wildlife was preparing for the oncoming winter.’
      • ‘Birds filled the woods with their songs, despite the oncoming winter.’
      • ‘Thus, breeding males commonly face the rigors of the oncoming winter in poor physical condition.’


  • The fact of being about to happen in the near future.

    ‘the oncoming of age’
    • ‘With the echo and reecho of the cave, the colony of bats sounded like the oncoming of a train.’
    • ‘In the past the sneeze may have signalled the potential oncoming of a severe illness’
    • ‘Will the change in barometric pressure or the oncoming of precipitation give an allergy sensitive person a headache?’
    • ‘With the oncoming of darkness, Tokyo city became alive with bright neon signs.’
    • ‘They didn't speak for a while longer, as the sun moved lower in the sky, signaling the oncoming of dusk and eventually night.’
    • ‘He shook his head and felt the familiar oncoming of tears.’
    • ‘I stared at him for a moment out of defeat, and then squeezed my eyes shut against the oncoming of new tears.’
    • ‘With the oncoming of beautiful weather, he clothed himself in his khaki, American Eagle shorts that showed his bronzed calf muscles exquisitely.’
    • ‘With no fruits and few vegetables, and in such cramped quarters, I fear the oncoming of plague greatly.’
    • ‘Each receiver detects the oncoming of the data signals with the maximum delay on the transmission paths.’