One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A specified period of five years.
- ‘Two 4th-cent. writers ascribe to the later emperor Trajan the view that Nero surpassed all other principes for a quinquennium, apparently referring to the first five years.’
- ‘In 2003 the second Plant Genome Size Workshop set a goal of estimating a further 1% in the next five years, and a similar target is likely for the following quinquennium.’
- ‘There was also a new housing programme (as before, concentrating on apartment blocks) which was to contribute 670 million square yards of new floor-space during the quinquennium.’
Early 17th century: from Latin, from quinque ‘five’ + annus ‘year’.
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