Dictionary.com
definitions
  • synonyms

hiatus

[hahy-ey-tuhs]
See more synonyms for hiatus on Thesaurus.com
noun, plural hi·a·tus·es, hi·a·tus.
  1. a break or interruption in the continuity of a work, series, action, etc.
  2. a missing part; gap or lacuna: Scholars attempted to account for the hiatus in the medieval manuscript.
  3. any gap or opening.
  4. Grammar, Prosody. the coming together, with or without break or slight pause, and without contraction, of two vowels in successive words or syllables, as in see easily.
  5. Anatomy. a natural fissure, cleft, or foramen in a bone or other structure.
Show More

Origin of hiatus

1555–65; < Latin hiātus opening, gap, equivalent to hiā(re) to gape, open + -tus suffix of v. action
Related formshi·a·tal, adjective

Synonyms

See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

lapse, interval, rift, discontinuity, chasm, lacuna, opening, space, gap, break, interim, blank, aperture, breach

Examples from the Web for hiatus

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Of course the reason for the hiatus in the books was plain enough.

    The Portygee

    Joseph Crosby Lincoln

  • No copies were retained, so there is a hiatus in the record.

  • And yet his experience told him 205 that there must be some rift, some hiatus in the scheme.

    The Crevice

    William John Burns and Isabel Ostrander

  • The Composer, however, observed the hiatus, and directed the insertion of two rests.

    The Shadow World

    Hamlin Garland

  • Then he covered the hiatus with paint, and hoisted the ensign to the flagstaff.

    The Wreck of the Titan

    Morgan Robertson


British Dictionary definitions for hiatus

hiatus

noun plural -tuses or -tus
  1. (esp in manuscripts) a break or gap where something is missing
  2. a break or interruption in continuity
  3. a break between adjacent vowels in the pronunciation of a word
  4. anatomy a natural opening or aperture; foramen
  5. anatomy a less common word for vulva
Show More
Derived Formshiatal, adjective

Word Origin

C16: from Latin: gap, cleft, aperture, from hiāre to gape, yawn
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

Word Origin and History for hiatus

n.

1560s, "break or opening in a material object," from Latin hiatus "opening, aperture, rupture, gap," from past participle stem of hiare "to gape, stand open" (see yawn (v.)). Sense of "gap or interruption in events, etc." is first recorded 1610s.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

hiatus in Medicine

hiatus

(hī-ātəs)
n. pl. hiatus
  1. An aperture or fissure in an organ or a body part.
  2. A foramen.
Show More
Related formshi•atal adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.