term noun

1 word or group of words

ADJ. specific | blanket, broad, general, generic | clear, precise | vague | ambiguous | strong His objection was couched in the strongest terms. | mild | colloquial, slang | pejorative ‘Swot’ is a pejorative term for someone who studies a lot. | technical | clinical, legal, medical, musical, etc.

VERB + TERM use | be couched in | define, explain | coin The term ‘acid rain’ was coined in the nineteenth century.

TERM + VERB connote sth, denote sth, describe sth, mean sth | apply to sth, be applied to sth, cover sth, refer to sth The term ‘renewable energy’ is applied, for example, to energy deriving from solar radiation.

PREP. ~ for ‘Old man’ is a slang term for ‘father’. | ~ of a term of abuse/endearment

PHRASES in glowing terms The chairman spoke of the achievements of the company in glowing terms. | in no uncertain terms We let them know in no uncertain terms just how disappointed we were. | in simple terms 2 in … terms showing what aspect of something you are considering

ADJ. absolute, material, practical, real Income has increased in real terms by 5%. | relative Iceland has had a mild winter, in relative terms. | broad, general | concrete | abstract | international | cultural, economic, financial, money, political, social, etc. In money terms, the event was a disaster.

3 (usually terms) of an agreement/a relationship

ADJ. favourable, unfavourable | express the breach of an express term in the contract | implied | contract, credit, peace

VERB + TERM dictate, negotiate, set Our opponents set the terms of the debate. | agree on

PREP. under the ~s of Under the terms of the alliance, Japan was not obliged to enter the war.

PHRASES on amicable/friendly/good terms The dispute was resolved on amicable terms. | on equal terms It is a sport in which the top men and women can compete on equal terms. | on familiar/first-name terms I'm on first-name terms with my boss. | on speaking terms They haven't been on speaking terms since they had that big row. | terms and conditions A wide range of accounts are available, with varying terms and conditions.

4 period of a school/university year

ADJ. college, school, university | autumn, spring, etc. | teaching

PREP. during (the) ~ It's hard to get away during term. | in the ~ We have exams in the summer term.

PHRASES the beginning/end of term We have exams at the end of term.

5 period of time

ADJ. long, short a long term of imprisonment | full (medical) The pregnancy went to full term (= lasted the normal length of time). | fixed The contract was for a fixed term of five years. | jail, prison | presidential

VERB + TERM serve He served a five-year prison term.

TERM + VERB expire, run out

PREP. at ~ (medical) Her baby was born at term.

PHRASES in the long/medium/short term In the long term, our efforts will pay off. | a term of imprisonment, a term of office The president was sworn in for his second term of office. | a term of years The lease is granted for a set term of years.