from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Of, at, relating to, or forming a limit, boundary, extremity, or end.
  • adjective Botany Growing or appearing at the end of a stem, branch, stalk, or similar part.
  • adjective Of, at, relating to, or being the end of a section or series; final. synonym: last.
  • adjective Of or relating to a transportation terminal.
  • adjective Relating to or occurring in a term or each term.
  • adjective Causing, ending in, or approaching death; fatal.
  • adjective Informal Extreme.
  • noun A point or part that forms the end.
  • noun An ornamental figure or object placed at the end of a larger structure; a finial.
  • noun A position in a circuit or device at which a connection is normally established or broken.
  • noun A passive conductor at such a position used to facilitate the connection.
  • noun An end of a railroad or other transportation line, or a station at such an end.
  • noun A building in an airport where travelers board and get off airplanes.
  • noun A town at the end of a transportation line.
  • noun Computers A device, often equipped with a keyboard and a video display, through which data or information can be entered or displayed.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A terminus, as of a railroad.
  • Of, pertaining to, or forming the terminus or termination of something; forming a boundary or extreme limit; pertaining to a term (see term, 1 and 2): as, a terminal pillar; the terminal edge of a polyhedron; the terminal facilities of a railway.
  • In botany, growing at the end of a branch or stem; terminating: as, a terminal peduncle, flower, or spike.
  • In logic, constituted by or relating to a term.
  • Occurring in every term; representing a term.
  • In anatomy and zoology, ending a set or series of like parts; apical: as, the middle sacral artery is the terminal branch of the abdominal aorta; the last coccygeal bone is the terminal one of the coccyx; a terminal mark or spine; the terminal joint of an antenna. See cuts under Colaspis and Erotylus.
  • noun That which terminates; the extremity; the end; especially, in electricity, the clampingscrew at each end of a voltaic battery, used for connecting it with the wires which complete the circuit.
  • noun In crystallography, the plane or planes which form the extremity of a crystal.
  • noun A charge made by a railway for the use of its termini or stations, or for the handling of freight at stations.
  • noun A terminus, as of a railroad.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun That which terminates or ends; termination; extremity.
  • noun (Eccl.) Either of the ends of the conducting circuit of an electrical apparatus, as an inductorium, dynamo, or electric motor, usually provided with binding screws for the attachment of wires by which a current may be conveyed into or from the machine; a pole.
  • noun The end of a line of railroad, with the switches, stations, sheds, and other appliances pertaining thereto.
  • noun Any station for the delivery or receipt of freight lying too far from the main line to be served by mere sidings.
  • noun A rate charged on all freight, independent of the distance, and supposed to cover the expenses of station service, as distinct from mileage rate, generally proportionate to the distance and intended to cover movement expenses; a terminal charge.
  • noun A town lying at the end of a railroad, in which the terminal is located; -- more properly called a terminus.
  • noun The station at either end of a bus line line which transports freight or passengers.
  • noun A station where passenger buses start or end a trip; -- also called bus terminal.
  • noun The structure at an airport where passengers board or debark, and where ticket purchases and baggage pickup is performed; -- also called airline terminal.
  • noun (Computers) An electronic device where data may be entered into a computer, and information received from it, usually consisting of a keyboard and video display unit (monitor); the terminal may be integrated or connected directly to a computer, or connected by a communications circuit with a computer at a remote location; -- also called computer terminal.
  • noun a terminal used for loading or unloading of freight.
  • adjective Of or pertaining to the end or extremity; forming the extremity.
  • adjective (Bot.) Growing at the end of a branch or stem; terminating.
  • adjective (Railroads) Pertaining to a railroad terminal; connected with the receipt or delivery of freight.
  • adjective See the Note under Moraine.
  • adjective See Terminus, n., 2 and 3.
  • adjective The limit toward which the velocity of a body approaches, as of a body falling through the air.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A building in an airport where passengers transfer from ground transportation to the facilities that allow them to board airplanes.
  • noun A rail station where service begins and ends; the end of the line. For example: Grand Central Terminal in New York City.
  • noun In electronics, the end of a line where signals are either transmitted or received, or a point along the length of a line where the signals are made available to apparatus.
  • noun An electric contact on a battery.
  • noun In telecommunications, the apparatus to send and/or receive signals on a line, such as a telephone or network device.


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English, from Latin terminālis, from terminus, boundary.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From French terminal, from Late Latin terminalis ("pertaining to a boundary or to the end, terminal, final"), from Latin terminus ("a bound, boundary, limit, end"); see term, terminus.


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