- a period of time equal to one twenty-fourth of a mean solar or civil day and equivalent to 60 minutes: He slept for an hour.
- any specific one of these 24 periods, usually reckoned in two series of 12, one series from midnight to noon and the second from noon to midnight, but sometimes reckoned in one series of 24, from midnight to midnight: He slept for the hour between 2 and 3 a.m. The hour for the bombardment was between 1300 and 1400.
- any specific time of day; the time indicated by a timepiece: What is the hour?
- a short or limited period of time: He savored his hour of glory.
- a particular or appointed time: What was the hour of death? At what hour do you open?
- a customary or usual time: When is your dinner hour?
- the present time: the man of the hour.
- time spent in an office, factory, or the like, or for work, study, etc.: The doctor's hours were from 10 to 4. What an employee does after hours is his or her own business.
- customary time of going to bed and getting up: to keep late hours.
- (in the Christian church) the seven stated times of the day for prayer and devotion.
- the offices or services prescribed for these times.
- a book containing them.
- distance normally covered in an hour's traveling: We live about an hour from the city.
- Astronomy. a unit of measure of right ascension representing 15°, or the twenty-fourth part of a great circle.
- a single period, as of class instruction or therapeutic consultation, usually lasting from 40 to 55 minutes.Compare clock-hour.
- Education. Also called credit hour. one unit of academic credit, usually representing attendance at one scheduled period of instruction per week throughout a semester, quarter, or term.
- the Hours, Classical Mythology. the Horae.
- of, relating to, or noting an hour.
- one's hour,
- Also one's last hour.the instant of death: The sick man knew that his hour had come.
- any crucial moment.
Origin of hour
Examples from the Web for hour
So here I am in my requisite Lululemon pants, grunting along to an old hip-hop song at a most ungodly hour.How Taryn Toomey’s ‘The Class’ Became New York’s Latest Fitness Craze
January 9, 2015
An hour later, he scored a second flight to Johannesburg for $380.‘We Out Here’: Inside the New Black Travel Movement
January 4, 2015
He was released within the hour without a bond on his own recognizance.What Would Happen if I Got in White Cop’s Face?
December 30, 2014
The child almost died from the delay of an hour in seeking help.Red Tape Is Strangling Good Samaritans
Philip K. Howard
December 27, 2014
Her phone rings at least once an hour with questions from journalists, which she answers in Arabic, English, and sometimes French.A Sunni-Shia Love Story Imperiled by al Qaeda
December 26, 2014
I was with him when he died, but knew not the hour he departed, for he sunk to rest like an infant.
For more than an hour, there was perfect stillness, as the shades of evening deepened.
There was a long, airy gallery, in which he was allowed to take exercise any hour of the day.
He was busy almost half an hour, while Uncle Peter smoked in silence.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
Very well; bring me what you have at that hour, and we'll strike a trade.Brave and Bold
- a period of time equal to 3600 seconds; 1/24 th of a calendar dayRelated adjectives: horal, horary
- any of the points on the face of a timepiece that indicate intervals of 60 minutes
- the hour an exact number of complete hoursthe bus leaves on the hour
- the time of day as indicated by a watch, clock, etc
- the period of time allowed for or used for somethingthe lunch hour; the hour of prayer
- a special moment or periodour finest hour
- the hour the present timethe man of the hour
- the distance covered in an hourwe live an hour from the city
- astronomy an angular measurement of right ascension equal to 15° or a 24th part of the celestial equator
- one's hour
- a time of success, fame, etc
- Also: one's last hourthe time of one's deathhis hour had come
- take one's hour Irish informal to do something in a leisurely manner
Word Origin and History for hour
mid-13c., from Old French hore "one-twelfth of a day" (sunrise to sunset), from Latin hora "hour, time, season," from Greek hora "any limited time," from PIE *yor-a-, from root *yer- "year, season" (see year). Greek hora was "a season; 'the season;'" in classical times, sometimes, "a part of the day," such as morning, evening, noon, night. The Greek astronomers apparently borrowed the notion of dividing the day into twelve parts (mentioned in Herodotus) from the Babylonians (night continued to be divided into four watches), but as the amount of daylight changed throughout the year, the hours were not fixed or of equal length. Equinoctal hours did not become established in Europe until the 4c., and as late as 16c. distinction sometimes was made between temporary (unequal) hours and sidereal (equal) ones. The h- has persisted in this word despite not being pronounced since Roman times. Replaced Old English tid, literally "time," and stund "period of time." As a measure of distance ("the distance that can be covered in an hour") it is recorded from 1785.
Idioms and Phrases with hour
see after hours; all hours; by the day (hour); eleventh hour; happy hour; keep late hours; on the hour; small hours.