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90s Slang You Should Know


[jan-yoo-er-ee] /ˈdʒæn yuˌɛr i/
noun, plural Januaries.
the first month of the year, containing 31 days.
Abbreviation: Jan.
Origin of January
before 1000; Middle English < Latin, noun use of Jānuārius, equivalent to Jānu(s) Janus + -ārius -ary; replacing Middle English Genever, Jeniver < Anglo-French, Old French Genever, Jenever < Latin, as above; replacing Old English Januarius < Latin Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for January
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • These presumably came into general use on January 1st, 1916.

    The Stamps of Canada Bertram Poole
  • Morris saw and fully admitted all this; and yet she stayed on till the end of January.

    Deerbrook Harriet Martineau
  • The birth of the Princess Elizabeth occurred January 28, 1635.

  • But January was so far away that no one thought of starting an argument on the subject.

    Left Behind James Otis
  • To-day for the first time since January 3, I have opened a Greek book.

    Julia Ward Howe Laura E. Richards
British Dictionary definitions for January


noun (pl) -aries
the first month of the year, consisting of 31 days
Word Origin
C14: from Latin Jānuārius, from adj: (month) of Janus1
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
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Word Origin and History for January

late 13c., Ieneuer, from Old North French Genever, Old French Jenvier (Modern French Janvier), attested from early 12c. in Anglo-French, from Latin Ianuarius (mensis) "(the month) of Janus," to whom the month was sacred as the beginning of the year (see Janus; cf. Italian Gennajo, Provençal Genovier, Portuguese Janeiro). The form was gradually Latinized by c.1400. Replaced Old English geola se æfterra "Later Yule." In Chaucer, a type-name for an old man.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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