Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Topic: NUMBERS

Date: 1600-1700
Language: French
Origin: bi- + -illion (as in million)

billion

number
     
bil‧lion plural billion or billions
1HMN the number 1,000,000,000:
The final cost could be as much as one billion dollars.
two/three/four etc billion
3.5 billion years ago
Overseas debt is a staggering £16 billion.
billions of pounds/dollars etc
Airlines have lost billions of dollars.
2 an extremely large number of things or people
a billion
A billion stars shone in the night sky.
billions of something
There are billions of things I want to say.
3HMN British English old use the number 1,000,000,000,000
billionth adjective
billionth noun [countable]
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