Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

2017 Word of the Year

ephemera

[ih-fem-er-uh] /ɪˈfɛm ər ə/
noun, plural ephemeras, ephemerae
[ih-fem-uh-ree] /ɪˈfɛm əˌri/ (Show IPA),
for 2.
1.
a plural of ephemeron.
2.
an ephemerid.
Origin of ephemera
1670-1680
1670-80; < Greek ephḗmera, neuter plural of ephḗmeros, taken as singular; see ephemeral

ephemeron

[ih-fem-uh-ron, -er-uh n] /ɪˈfɛm əˌrɒn, -ər ən/
noun, plural ephemera
[ih-fem-er-uh] /ɪˈfɛm ər ə/ (Show IPA),
ephemerons.
1.
anything short-lived or ephemeral.
2.
ephemera, items designed to be useful or important for only a short time, especially pamphlets, notices, tickets, etc.
Origin
1570-80; < Greek ephḗmeron short-lived insect, noun use of neuter of ephḗmeros; see ephemeral
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for ephemera
Contemporary Examples
  • The paintings, ephemera, wall texts, and audio tour construct a story of an obsessive, gifted genius who lived for love and art.

Historical Examples
British Dictionary definitions for ephemera

ephemera

/ɪˈfɛmərə/
noun (pl) -eras, -erae (-əˌriː)
1.
a mayfly, esp one of the genus Ephemera
2.
something transitory or short-lived
3.
(functioning as pl) a class of collectable items not originally intended to last for more than a short time, such as tickets, posters, postcards, or labels
4.
a plural of ephemeron
Word Origin
C16; see ephemeral

ephemeron

/ɪˈfɛməˌrɒn/
noun (pl) -era (-ərə), -erons
1.
(usually pl) something transitory or short-lived
Word Origin
C16: see ephemeral
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for ephemera
n.

late 14c., originally a medical term, from Medieval Latin ephemera (febris) "(fever) lasting a day," from fem. of ephemerus, from Greek ephemeros "lasting only one day, short-lived," from epi "on" (see epi-) + hemerai, dative of hemera "day," from PIE *amer- "day."

Sense extended 17c. to short-lived insects and flowers; general sense of "thing of transitory existence" is first attested 1751. Cf. Greek ephemeroi "men," literally "creatures of a day."

ephemeron

n.

1620s, from Greek (zoon) ephemeron, neuter of ephemeros (see ephemera). Figurative use by 1771.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for ephemera

Word Value for ephemera

15
16
Scrabble Words With Friends