next after the first; being the ordinal number for two.
being the latter of two equal parts.
next after the first in place, time, or value: the second house from the corner.
next after the first in rank, grade, degree, status, or importance: the second person in the company.
inferior or subordinate; secondary.
Grammar. noting or pertaining to the second person.
Music. being the lower of two parts for the same instrument or voice: second horn; second alto.
other or another: a second Solomon.
Automotive. of, relating to, or operating at the gear transmission ratio at which drive shaft speed is greater than that of low gear but not so great as that of other gears for a given engine crankshaft speed: second gear.
a second part.
the second member of a series.
Boxing. a person who, between rounds of a prizefight, gives aid, advice, etc., to a boxer.
a person who serves as a representative or attendant of a duelist.
Automotive. second gear.
a person or thing that is next after the first in place, time, or value.
a person or thing that is next after the first in rank, grade, degree, status, or importance.
Usually seconds. an additional helping of food: He had seconds on the meat and potatoes.
(in parliamentary procedure)
a person who expresses formal support of a motion so that it may be discussed or put to a vote.
an act or instance of doing this.
(in certain British universities) a type or grade of college degree granted according to a student's performance on specific written and oral examinations.
a tone on the next degree from a given tone.
the interval between such tones.
the harmonic combination of such tones.
the lower of two parts in a piece of concerted music.
a voice or instrument performing such a part.
Metallurgy. a piece of somewhat defective but salable tin plate.
Baseball. second base.
to assist or support.
to further or advance, as aims.
(in parliamentary procedure) to express formal support of (a motion, proposal, etc.), as a necessary preliminary to further discussion or to voting.
to act as second to (a boxer, duelist, etc.).
in the second place, group, etc.; secondly: The catcher is batting second.
- sec·ond·er, noun
Other definitions for second (2 of 3)
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. Abbreviation: sec; Symbol: s, S
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).
Other definitions for second (3 of 3)
to transfer (a military officer, official, or employee) to another organization for temporary duty: Called up in 1941, he served in the Army until 1942, when he was seconded to Naval Intelligence at Bletchley.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use second in a sentence
Between April and July 2020, the city issued at least 168 citations, but the number appears to have dropped off in the second half of the year, not just for the city but for the county as a whole.Despite Crackdown Announcement, Not Much COVID-19 Enforcement Is Happening | Jesse Marx | February 11, 2021 | Voice of San Diego
Disney canceled its dividend in the second half of 2020 as its finances remained under pressure.Disney took in nearly $5 billion less in revenue over the pandemic-riddled holidays | Steven Zeitchik | February 11, 2021 | Washington Post
In last-second wins against Miami and Chicago, Brooks said, it was determination that pushed the Wizards to victory.The Wizards’ defense again lets them down in loss at home to Raptors | Ava Wallace | February 11, 2021 | Washington Post
The $99,900 GT model promises up to 522 horsepower with a 0-60 time just under four seconds.Audi’s e-Tron GT charges up fast, but turns even faster | Stan Horaczek | February 10, 2021 | Popular-Science
USDA Secretary of Agriculture nominee Tom Vilsack clears first hurdle, says he will focus on climate changeToubia says the company’s first products will reach the marketplace in the second half of 2022.Raising the steaks: First 3-D-printed rib-eye is unveiled | Laura Reiley | February 9, 2021 | Washington Post
Gunshots rang out in Paris this morning on a second day of deadly violence that has stunned the French capital.
And as he adjusted to this change in circumstances, he screamed at himself a second time: Wait!Powerful Congressman Writes About ‘Fleshy Breasts’ | Asawin Suebsaeng | January 7, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
A second document was titled: “Gambia Reborn: A Charter for Transition from Dictatorship to Democracy and Development.”The Shadowy U.S. Veteran Who Tried to Overthrow a Country | Jacob Siegel | January 6, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
If 29 vote for someone else, the race for speaker goes to a second ballot for the first time in almost 100 years.
At least 29 fellow Republicans must vote against Boehner for a second ballot to be reached, and that seems very unlikely.
In treble, second and fourth, the first change is a dodge behind; and the second time the treble leads, there's a double Bob.Tintinnalogia, or, the Art of Ringing | Richard Duckworth and Fabian Stedman
On his head was the second-hand hat of some parvenu's coachman, gold lace, cockade and all.The Pit Town Coronet, Volume I (of 3) | Charles James Wills
The beauty, the mystery,—this fierce sunshine or something—stir——' She hesitated for a fraction of a second.The Wave | Algernon Blackwood
Roman Pane who accompanied Columbus on his second voyage alludes to another method of using the herb.Tobacco; Its History, Varieties, Culture, Manufacture and Commerce | E. R. Billings.
He set down as the second the golden rule, “Whatsoever ye would that men should do unto you, do ye even so to them.”The Giant of the North | R.M. Ballantyne
British Dictionary definitions for second (1 of 3)
coming directly after the first in numbering or counting order, position, time, etc; being the ordinal number of two: often written 2nd
(as noun): the second in line
rated, graded, or ranked between the first and third levels
alternate: every second Thursday
additional; extra: a second opportunity
resembling a person or event from an earlier period of history; unoriginal: a second Wagner
of lower quality; inferior: belonging to the second class
denoting the lowest but one forward ratio of a gearbox in a motor vehicle
relating to or denoting a musical part, voice, or instrument lower in pitch than another part, voice, or instrument (the first): the second tenors
of or relating to a part, instrument, or instrumentalist regarded as subordinate to another (the first): the second flute
at second hand by hearsay
British education an honours degree of the second class, usually further divided into an upper and lower designation: Full term: second-class honours degree
the lowest but one forward ratio of a gearbox in a motor vehicle: he changed into second on the bend
(in boxing, duelling, etc) an attendant who looks after a competitor
a speech seconding a motion or the person making it
the interval between one note and another lying next above or below it in the diatonic scale
(plural) goods of inferior quality
(plural) informal a second helping of food
(plural) the second course of a meal
to give aid or backing to
(in boxing, etc) to act as second to (a competitor)
to make a speech or otherwise express formal support for (a motion already proposed)
Also: secondly in the second place
Also: secondly as the second point: linking what follows with the previous statement
- seconder, noun
British Dictionary definitions for second (2 of 3)
1/60 of a minute of time
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-133: Symbol: s
1/60 of a minute of angle: Symbol: ″
a very short period of time; moment
British Dictionary definitions for second (3 of 3)
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
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
Scientific definitions for second
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.
Other Idioms and Phrases with 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
- 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.