Origin of second

1
1250–1300; Middle English (adj., noun and adv.) < Old French (adj.) < Latin secundus following, next, second, equivalent to sec- (base of sequī to follow) + -undus adj. suffix

Related forms

sec·ond·er, noun

Definition for second (2 of 3)

second

2
[ sek-uhnd ]
/ ˈsɛk ənd /

noun

the sixtieth part of a minute of time.
a moment or instant: It takes only a second to phone.
the basic unit of time in the International System of Units(SI), equal to the duration of 9,192,631,770 cycles of radiation in a transition, or energy level change, of the cesium atom. Symbol: s, S; Abbreviation: sec
Geometry, Astronomy. the sixtieth part of a minute of angular measure, often represented by the sign ″, as in 30″, which is read as 30 seconds.Compare angle1(def 1c).

Origin of second

2
1350–1400; Middle English seconde < Middle French < Medieval Latin secunda (minūta) second (minute), feminine of secundus second1

Definition for second (3 of 3)

second

3
[ si-kond ]
/ sɪˈkɒnd /

verb (used with object)

British. to transfer (an officer, official, or the like) temporarily to another post.

Origin of second

3
1795–1805; < French second, noun use of the adj. in the phrase en second, as in lieutenant en second second lieutenant; see second1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for second

British Dictionary definitions for second (1 of 3)

Derived Forms

seconder, noun

Word Origin for second

C13: via Old French from Latin secundus coming next in order, from sequī to follow

British Dictionary definitions for second (2 of 3)

second

2
/ (ˈsɛkənd) /

noun

  1. 1/60 of a minute of time
  2. the basic SI unit of time: the duration of 9 192 631 770 periods of radiation corresponding to the transition between two hyperfine levels of the ground state of caesium-133Symbol: s
1/60 of a minute of angleSymbol:
a very short period of time; moment

Word Origin for second

C14: from Old French, from Medieval Latin pars minūta secunda the second small part (a minute being the first small part of an hour); see second 1

British Dictionary definitions for second (3 of 3)

second

3
/ (sɪˈkɒnd) /

verb (tr) British

to transfer (an employee) temporarily to another branch, etc
military to transfer (an officer) to another post, often retiring him to a staff or nonregimental position

Word Origin for second

C19: from French en second in second rank (or position)
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

Medicine definitions for second

second

[ sĕkənd ]

adj.

Coming next after the first in order, place, rank, time, or quality.
Being the next closest to the innermost digit, especially on the foot.

Related forms

second n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for second

second

[ sĕkənd ]

A unit of time equal to 160 of a minute.♦ A sidereal second is 160 of a sidereal minute, and a mean solar second is 160 of a mean solar minute. See more at sidereal time solar time.
A unit of angular measurement, such as longitude or right ascension, equal to 160 of a minute of arc.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with second

second


In addition to the idioms beginning with second

  • second banana
  • second best
  • second childhood
  • second class
  • second cousin
  • second fiddle
  • second hand
  • second nature
  • second sight
  • second thoughts
  • second to none
  • second wind

also see:

  • at second hand
  • come off (second best)
  • in a flash (second)
  • in the first (second) place
  • on second thought
  • play second fiddle
  • split second
  • top (second) banana
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.