[ sen-suh s ]
/ ˈsɛn səs /

noun, plural cen·sus·es.

an official enumeration of the population, with details as to age, sex, occupation, etc.
(in ancient Rome) the registration of citizens and their property, for purposes of taxation.

verb (used with object)

to take a census of (a country, city, etc.): The entire nation is censused every 10 years.

Origin of census

1605–15; < Latin: a listing and property assessment of citizens, equivalent to cēns(ēre) to assess, register (citizens) in a census + -tus suffix of v. action; for -s- in place of -st- see censor

Related forms

cen·su·al [sen-shoo-uh l] /ˈsɛn ʃu əl/, adjectivepre·cen·sus, noun

Can be confused

census consensus (see usage note at consensus)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for censual


/ (ˈsɛnsəs) /

noun plural -suses

an official periodic count of a population including such information as sex, age, occupation, etc
any offical counta traffic census
(in ancient Rome) a registration of the population and a property evaluation for purposes of taxation

Derived Forms

censual, adjective

Word Origin for census

C17: from Latin, from cēnsēre to assess
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