[yes-ter-yeer, -yeer]


last year.
the recent years; time not long past.


during time not long past.

Origin of yesteryear

yester- + year; apparently introduced by D.G. Rossetti (1870) to render Middle French antan (Villon) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for yesteryear

past, eld

Examples from the Web for yesteryear

Contemporary Examples of yesteryear

Historical Examples of yesteryear

  • That was the word the sloppy copyist of yesteryear had wrongly transcribed.


    Roger Arcot

  • Yesteryear he was mad for the open air, and the games, and the joy of life.

    The God of Love

    Justin Huntly McCarthy

  • In that moment books and plays seemed like the snows of yesteryear.

    May Iverson's Career

    Elizabeth Jordan

  • Oh, well, all flesh is grass, and there is no grass of yesteryear.

  • Like the lovers of yesteryear, those of to-day were prisoners.

    The Golden Triangle

    Maurice Leblanc

British Dictionary definitions for yesteryear



last year or the past in general


during last year or the past in general
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 yesteryear

coined 1870 by Dante Gabriel Rossetti from yester(day) + year to translate French antan (from Vulgar Latin *anteannum "the year before") in a refrain by François Villon: Mais ou sont les neiges d'antan? which Rossetti rendered "But where are the snows of yesteryear?"

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper