interval

[in-ter-vuhl]
|||

noun


Idioms

    at intervals,
    1. at particular periods of time; now and then: At intervals, there were formal receptions at the governor's mansion.
    2. at particular places, with gaps in between: detour signs at intervals along the highway.

Origin of interval

1250–1300; Middle English intervall(e) < Latin intervallum interval, literally, space between two palisades. See inter-, wall
Related formsin·ter·val·ic, in·ter·val·lic [in-ter-val-ik] /ˌɪn tərˈvæl ɪk/, adjective
Can be confusedinterval period

Synonyms for interval

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


Examples from the Web for interval

Contemporary Examples of interval

Historical Examples of interval

  • So K. waited for "the season," and ate his heart out for Sidney in the interval.

    K

    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • After an interval she added: "Only mother is here—always with me."

    Green Mansions

    W. H. Hudson

  • I dared not press him with more questions; but after an interval he said plainly: "She is not there now."

    Green Mansions

    W. H. Hudson

  • What sums did I spend during this interval in expedition-money to Time!

  • The Assistant Commissioner, who could not see them, grew a little nervous in the interval.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad


British Dictionary definitions for interval

interval

noun

the period of time marked off by or between two events, instants, etc
the distance between two points, objects, etc
a pause or interlude, as between periods of intense activity
British a short period between parts of a play, concert, film, etc; intermission
music the difference of pitch between two notes, either sounded simultaneously (harmonic interval) or in succession as in a musical part (melodic interval). An interval is calculated by counting the (inclusive) number of notes of the diatonic scale between the two notesthe interval between C and G is a fifth
the ratio of the frequencies of two sounds
maths the set containing all real numbers or points between two given numbers or points, called the endpoints. A closed interval includes the endpoints, but an open interval does not
at intervals
  1. occasionally or intermittently
  2. with spaces between
Derived Formsintervallic (ˌɪntəˈvælɪk), adjective

Word Origin for interval

C13: from Latin intervallum, literally: space between two palisades, from inter- + vallum palisade, rampart
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 interval
n.

early 14c., from Old French intervalle (14c.), earlier entreval (13c.), from Late Latin intervallum "space, interval, distance," originally "space between palisades or ramparts," from inter "between" (see inter-) + vallum "rampart" (see wall). Metaphoric sense of "gap in time" was present in Latin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

interval in Medicine

interval

[ĭntər-vəl]

n.

A space between two objects, points, or units.
The amount of time between two specified instants, events, or states.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.