From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishtimetime1 /taɪm/ ●●● S1 W1 noun 1 minutes/hours etc [uncountable]TMC the thing that is measured in minutes, hours, days, years etc using clocks Einstein changed the way we think about space and time. close relationships established over a long period of time Customers have only a limited amount of time to examine the goods.time passes/goes by Their marriage got better as time went by.► see thesaurus at period2 on a clock [singular]TIME/WHAT TIME IS IT a particular point in time shown on a clock in hours and minutes ‘What time is it?’ ‘It’s about two thirty.’ What time are you going out tonight?what time do you make it? British English, what time do you have? American English (=used to ask someone with a watch what time it is)have you got the time? British English, do you have the time? American English (=used to ask someone if they know what time it is)tell the time British English, tell time American English (=be able to understand a clock) Robin’s just learning to tell the time.look at the time (=used when you realize that it is later than you thought it was) Oh no. Look at the time. I’ll be late.is that the time? (=used when you suddenly realize what the time is) Is that the time? I must go.this time tomorrow/last week etc By this time tomorrow I’ll know whether I’ve got the job.3 occasion [countable]TIME/AT A PARTICULAR TIME an occasion when something happens or someone does something That was the only time we disagreed. Do you remember the time I hit Tom Benson? Mary had seen the film many times.(for) the first/second/last etc time It was the first time that he had lost a game. Gerry had just had back surgery for the third time in two years.(the) next time/(the) last time/this time Why don’t you drop in for a drink next time you’re over this way? The last time (=the most recent time) I saw Jonathan was Thursday evening. The freezing weather did not return until February but this time we were prepared.the first/second/next/last etc time round (=the first, second etc time something happens) I missed their concert the first time round so I’m going next week.every/each time I meet up with Julie every time I go to Washington.how many times ... ? How many times did you take your driving test? How many times have I told you not to wander off like that? (=I have told you many times) One time (=once) I went to a garage sale and bought fifteen books.GrammarYou say: The first time I saw it, I loved it. ✗Don’t say: At the first time I saw it, I loved it.4 point when something happensTIME/AT A PARTICULAR TIME [countable, uncountable] the particular minute, hour, day etc when something happens or should happenat the time of something She was three months pregnant at the time of Stephen’s death.at some/any/that time He is performing as well as at any time in his career. The UK has 500,000 stray dogs on its streets at any one time (=at any particular time).at a/the time when ... At the time when this scheme was introduced, it was recognised that there might be problems.by the time ... The phone was ringing but by the time she got indoors, it had stopped.it’s time to do something Rosie – it’s time to get up.it’s time for something Come on, it’s time for bed. He glanced at his watch. ‘It’s time for me to go.’it’s time somebody did something It’s time I fed the dog. Now is the right time for us to move to London.a good/bad time This might be a good time to start planning the new garden.not the time/hardly the time Now is not the time to annoy Peter.there’s no time like the present (=used to say that now is a good time to do something) ‘When do you want to meet?’ ‘Well, there’s no time like the present.’dinner/lunch/tea etc time It’s nearly dinner time.opening/closing time (=the time when a shop, bar etc opens or closes) We empty the till each night at closing time.arrival/departure time (=the time when a train, plane etc arrives or leaves) Our estimated arrival time is 2:30 pm.time of day/year England is so lovely at this time of year. We’ll sort that out when the time comes (=when it becomes necessary).5 period of timePERIOD OF TIME [singular, uncountable] a period of time during which something happens or someone does something Dustin wanted to spend as much time as possible with his family.a long/short/limited time I first met Jennifer a long time ago. They stopped for a short time to rest the horses. Andy and Tom talked for some time (=for a fairly short period). Alison was married, for a time (=for a fairly short period), to a comedian. Martin disliked being away from his family for any length of time (=for more than just a short period). It took her a long time to make a decision. Learning a language isn’t easy – it takes time (=takes a long period of time).take time to do something (=deliberately spend time doing something) While in New York he took time to visit some friends.travel time I wanted to make better use of my travel time. 6 available timeTIME/HOW LONG [uncountable] an amount of time that is available for you to do something I’ll visit him if I have time. Molly would like to do some diving if there is time.have time for something She realized she would have time for a coffee before her train left. We don’t have to rush. We have all the time in the world (=have plenty of time). June had little time to spare (=available time) for making her own clothes.free/spare time (=time when you are not working) He writes poetry in his spare time. Being prepared for meetings will save time. I don’t want to waste time arguing. She spent precious time (=valuable and important time) looking for a telephone. I seem to spend most of my time on the phone. McDuff passed the time writing letters (=wrote letters because he had nothing else to do).have time on your hands/time to kill (=not have enough to do) Now the children have left home, she has too much time on her hands.make/find time (for something/to do something) (=plan so that you have time available for something) Make time to talk to your children. Book your ticket soon, as time is running out.time’s up (=used to say that it is the end of the time allowed for something such as a competition or examination)we’re out of time (=used on radio and television programmes to say that there is no more time available on the programme)7 → all the time8 → most of the time9 → half the time10 → at times11 → from time to time12 → time after time/time and time again13 → at all times14 → nine times out of ten/99 times out of 100 etc15 → at the time16 → at one time17 → at this time18 → at no time19 → for the time being20 → in 10 days’/five years’/a few minutes’ etc time21 → in time22 → with time to spare23 → over time24 → with time/given time25 → take your time26 → five/ten/many etc times ...27 → ... at a time28 → on time29 → ahead of/behind time30 → it’s about time31 → not before time/and about time (too)32 → the best/biggest etc ... of all time33 → in no time (at all)/in next to no time34 → any time (now)35 → it’s (only/just) a matter/question of time36 → (only) time will tell37 period in historyPERIOD OF TIME [countable] (also times [plural]) a particular period in history Mankind has used the horse since ancient times. In earlier times, servants would use the bare wooden stairs at the back of the house.at/in/during etc the time of something He lived at the time of the Napoleonic wars.our time(s) (=the present period in history) Air pollution has become one of the most significant health problems of our time.38 → behind the times39 → move/change/keep up with the times40 → ahead of your/its time41 pleasant/unpleasantPERIOD OF TIME [countable] a good time, bad time, difficult time etc is a period or occasion when you have good, bad, difficult etc experiences This was the happiest time of her life.good/bad/hard etc times They had their happy times, but they had their hard times too.have a good/great/lovely etc time (=enjoy yourself) Did you have a good time at the party? Julie went to a wedding at the weekend and had the time of her life (=enjoyed herself very much).42 → somebody’s time in/at/as something43 → before your time44 in part of the world [uncountable]TMC the way of referring to points in time in one particular part of the world Eastern Standard Time British Summer Time The flight to Boston arrives at 1.15 pm local time.45 DStime taken [countable] a) the amount of time taken by a competitor in a race The Olympic medallist’s time in the 200 metres final was 19.21 seconds. b) journey time the amount of time a journey takes The journey time to London is approximately four hours. 46 sports [uncountable] British English the end of the normal period of playing time in a sports game, especially football syn full time Mason’s goal 13 minutes from time earned his team a place in the finals.47 APMmusic [uncountable] the number of beats in each bar in a piece of music Waltzes are usually in three-four time.48 → in time to/with something49 → keep/beat time50 → keep perfect/good etc time51 → do time52 → pass the time of day (with somebody)53 → time was (when)54 → there’s no time to lose55 → make good time56 → race/work/battle against time57 → time is money58 → time is on your side59 → time is a great healer/heals all wounds60 → time flies61 → in your own time62 → in your own (good) time63 → all in good time64 → have a lot of/no time for somebody/something65 → time of life66 → your time67 → time of the month68 → time out of mind → big time1, full-time, half-time, part-time, real-time, → at the best of times at best3(11), → time is of the essence at essence(4), → bide your time at bide(1), → in the fullness of time at fullness(1), → give somebody/something time at give1(21), → kill time at kill1(8), → lose time at lose(8), → mark time at mark1(11), → move with the times at move1(17), → in the nick of time at nick1(1), → for old times’ sake at old(19), → once upon a time at once1(14), → play for time at play1(18), → the time is ripe at ripe(3), → at the same time at same1(3), → sign of the times at sign1(9), → a stitch in time (saves nine) at stitch1(8), → have a whale of a time at whale1(2)COLLOCATIONS – Meanings 1,5 & 6verbstime passes/goes byAs time passed, she thought less and less about her family back home.take time (=require a long time to do)Learning a new skill takes time.have time (=have enough time to do something)I didn’t do it because I didn’t have time.have/get time to do somethingWe never get time to do anything together.spend timeI’m going to spend some time with my family.pass the time (=spend a period of time doing something)The prisoners pass the time reading, or writing letters.waste timeYou are wasting your time arguing with him.save timeI used a ready-made sauce in order to save time.make/find time to do something (=do something, even though you are busy)You need to make time to do things you enjoy.kill time (=spend time doing something unimportant while waiting for something)He was just killing time before his appointment.ADJECTIVES/NOUN + time a long timeI haven’t seen him for a long time.a short timeA short time later, she heard him drive away.a limited time (=a short period of time)The offer is available for a limited time only. some time (=quite a long period of time)I’ve known the truth for some time.free/spare timeHe spends all this free time watching television.precious/valuable timeI’m sorry if I’m taking up your valuable time.family timeAs the children get older, evenings become valuable family time.journey/travel time (=the time it takes to travel somewhere)By train, the journey time to London is about two hours.phrasesa period of timeOver a period of time the students develop their own ideas.an amount/a length of timeCustomers only have a limited amount of time to inspect the goods.there is time to do something (=there is enough time to do it)There was no time to discuss it further.it takes time to do somethingIt took them a long time to struggle through the crowds.as time goes on (=as time passes)I understood him better as time went on.time is running out (=there is not much time left to do something)Doctors are looking for a suitable donor, but time is running out.time’s up (=used to say that the time allowed for something has finished)Time’s up, class. Put your pens down and hand your papers to the front. have time to kill (=have time to do something unimportant while waiting for something)I still had some time to kill, so I thought I’d make a couple of phone calls.COMMON ERRORS ► Don’t say ‘a small time’. Say a short time. THESAURUSa time when something happenstime a time when something happens or when you should do somethingThe last time I saw her she was in high school. It’s time for you to go to bed.The best time to visit Scotland is in late May.occasion a time when something happens. Occasion is more formal than timeThey have been seen together on several occasions.The last occasion the two teams met, the Giants won easily. moment a particular point in time when something happensAt that moment (=at exactly that time), the door bell rang. The next moment she was gone.point a particular time during a longer period of timeAt one point during the play she completely forgot her lines.the lowest point of the holidaya long timea long time a long period of time, especially many months or yearsThey’ve been married a long time – nearly 30 years.The house has been empty for a long time.all day/night/year/week continuing for the whole day, night, year etc – used especially to emphasize that it is a long timeIt’s going to take me all night to finish this essay.He’s in London all week, and only comes home at the weekends.hours/weeks/months/years many hours, weeks, months, or years – used to emphasize that it is a long time, or much longer than it should beIt’s years since I rode a bike.My wife had to wait months for a hospital appointment.ages especially British English informal a very long timeI’ve been standing here for ages.The software takes ages to load.They’ve lived there for ages.a while (also some time) a fairly long timeI hadn’t seen Paul for a while, and he’d completely changed.It may be some time before the company starts to make a profit.the longest time American English a very long timeFor the longest time, my daughter wasn’t reading at all.It took me the longest time to figure out how to work the sunroof in this car.a short timea minute/moment a short timeI’ll call you back in a minute.Can I show you something? It will only take a moment.a second a very short timeI’ll be ready in a second.Just a second – I can’t find my wallet.an instant written a very short timeIn an instant, they were gone.He paused for an instant.a little while/a short while a short period of time, especially a few hours, days, or weeksI’ve been to Tokyo, but I was only there for a short while.I saw him a little while ago.
Examples from the Corpustime• All systems settle down after a time.• After a time, I began to feel more relaxed.• He chatted to us for a time, then left.• For a time, the 1,600 seater hall was home to a Saturday night film show, before being converted to a night club.• I've got to get this to the video store by closing time.• Bill had lost his job, and it was a difficult time for him.• Every time I met her, she asked me about the children.• How much time do you think they'll need to paint the house?• I didn't really enjoy my time in Boston.• I really enjoyed my time at university.• Give us a call next time you're in town.• I've heard Jessie play a number of times, and I think he's great.• Drugs can alter our understanding of time and space.• At one time, Hakami was ranked 32nd in the world.• Check with the museum for opening times at www.musart.co.• He played for Barcelona for four years, and during that time they won two major competitions.• Do you remember that time Tim got really drunk at Sarah's party?• Entrance fees to the exhibit have been reduced for the time being.• Could I have the times of the trains to Birmingham please?• Do you remember the time when Dad lost the car keys?is that the time?• Another difficulty is that the time perspectives used for managerial evaluation have changed very little over the years.• Oh my god, is that the time? I've got to go!• Good heavens, is that the time?• William Oh shit, is that the time?One time• Miles really wanted to win badly. One time he had his agent try to make loud noises in the background.• Can you think of one particular moment? One time?when the time comes• Oh, not now, but when the time comes - if it does come.• But, when the times comes, his proposers look as if they will have an incontestable piece of evidence.• We'll decide how to tell her when the time comes.• I hope that Opposition Members will support it in the Division Lobby when the time comes.• Add half to each pile when the time comes, plus two more hickory chunks to each side.• So, when the time comes and you need to replace a part on your Toyota, buy the real thing.• At least they will have my testimony when the time comes.• It may be that when the time comes our Party will be divided in regard to this matter.for any length of time• They will not be able to survive in the desert for any length of time.• Anyone who has lived here for any length of time is familiar with the housing problem.• Once you've injected for any length of time, there's no point in snorting or chasing.• She comes over all peculiar now if you even talk about kids for any length of time.• Because utmost vigilance was required of him, he was reluctant to leave his post for any length of time.• When standing for any length of time, remember that a wide base is more stable than a small one.• If lost, the ferret can not survive for any length of time.• Such organizations have many other characteristics which anybody who has worked in them for any length of time will recognize.• Rarely had they been left alone together for any length of time, but one thing now seemed certain.• Beyond that, things tended to be too small and fuzzy to work with for any length of time.time is running out• They are waiting for a kidney donor and time is running out fast.• Clay Shaw of Florida, has failed to gain momentum, and time is running out.• Meanwhile, the young stylist must find her long lost sister before her wedding on Saturday and time is running out.• Anyway, time is running out, as 1997 bears down on Hong Kong.• Plainly, then, the resolve is there to save this Series from itself, but time is running out.• But time is running out and I am suddenly discovering lots of subjects for my sketchpad.• But they're both aware that time is running out.• But possibly most crucial of all, Cardus knows that time is running out.ancient times• They swore that the forest had existed by these bounds from ancient times.• Hydrogen sulphide was probably a relatively rare commodity, even in ancient times.• Spirituality does not exist only in ancient times, or in books.• They were probably unknown there in ancient times.• Since ancient times people have disputed the actions taken by their neighbours.• Since ancient times, the rowan tree has been considered a scourge to witches.• Indeed, the latest microbrew trend actually harks back to ancient times, when brewers grabbed whatever flavorings were nearby.• Fortunately, some sediments, by rare good fortune, survive from very ancient times with little or no loss of legibility.good/bad/hard etc times• As hard times turn to iron times this is an urgent question.• In good times, the timespan can be as much as three months.• However, you would not get £149.95p each if you fell on hard times and wanted to sell your sovereigns.• There were some good times with Trudy.• So it came as a relief to hear that better times were ahead.• Axe hacks' snacks One hard-pressed organisation seems determined to keep up its standards despite its financial problems in these hard times.• Get ready to let those good times roll.• Great athletes are marked by the ability to strive through hard times.local time• The combat operations began just after 1am local time, shortly after the new government was sworn in.• McCready's flight took off on time and he landed at Hannover at eight, local time.• The temperature at 1: 00 p. m. local time is 29 degrees.• It scheduled a news conference for 9 p. m. local time at its Amsterdam headquarters.• The impact, occurring shortly before midnight local time, apparently knocked out all communications before warning could be given.• The subjects must continue to live their normal routines, but now in accord with the new local time.• This moment is defined as noon on local time.