(lower case).(Show Less)
Etymology: Letter form.
The first letter of the English alphabet, as it was of the ancient Roman Alphabet (and as were its prototypes Alpha of the Greek alphabet, and Aleph of the Phoenician and ancient Semitic alphabets). The English letter form capital A
reflects Latin A
, itself reflecting Greek Α
Letter name. a
is usual as the name of the letter in classical Latin, and hence in English. (In ancient Greek the name of the letter was ἄλϕα
) The plural has been written aes
In both Greek and Latin this symbol represented the vowel formed with the tongue in the lowest position in the mouth, distinguished by vowel height from the next closest (front and back) vowel sounds represented by e
. Long and short /a/
phonemes existed in each language. In Old English there was additionally a phonemic contrast between low front and back vowels; the back sound /ɑ/
(and its long equivalent) was represented by a
, and the front sound /æ/
(and its long equivalent) by the digraph æ
: see ). This phonemic contrast is not found in the sound system of later stages in the history of English, a
subsequently being typically the representation of the lowest sound in the English sound system (as in Greek and Latin) rather than of a distinctively low back sound (as in Old English).
In modern English the symbol a
(i) British English /a/
, U.S. English /æ/
, in e.g. man
(by some phoneticians the British English vowel is transcribed as /æ/
rather than /a/
(ii) British and U.S. English /eɪ/
, in e.g. name
(iii) British English /ɑː/
, U.S. English /ɑ/
, in e.g. father
; in British English typically also in e.g. calf
, and (in some, typically southern or RP, varieties) also in e.g. bath
(standard lexical sets palm
: see J. C. Wells Accents of English
) I. p. xviii–xix, 142–4, 133–5);
(iv) British and U.S. English /ɪ/
, in e.g. village
or (sometimes) climate
(v) British and U.S. English /ə/
, in e.g. comma
, or (sometimes) climate
(vi) (after w
) British English /ɒ/
, U.S. English /ɑ/
, in e.g. wan
(vii) (after w
) British English /ɔː/
, U.S. English /ɔ/
, in e.g. war
On the spelling for British and U.S. English /ɛ/
see discussion at
is the first letter of several digraphs, as follows:
(i) British and U.S. English /eɪ/
, in e.g. pain
(ii) (before r
) British English /ɛː/
, U.S. English /ɛ(ə)/
, in e.g. pair
(iii) (rarely) British English /ʌɪ/
, U.S. English /aɪ/
, in e.g. aye
‘yes’ or (in British English) Isaiah
; (in Scots and sometimes in English regional (northern) use this digraph also occurs for /e/
in e.g. ain
(i) British English /ɔː/
, U.S. English /ɔ/
, in e.g. laud
(ii) British English /ɑː/
, U.S. English /æ/
, in e.g. laugh
(iii) British English /ɒ/
, U.S. English /ɔ/
, in e.g. laurel
(compare also Lawrence
(iv) British English and U.S. English /eɪ/
, in e.g. gauge
(v) British English /əʊ/
, U.S. English /ɔ/
, or (in some cases) /ɑ/
, in e.g. mauve
(vi) (rarely, in unnaturalized borrowings) British and U.S. English /aʊ/
, in e.g. Rathaus
, representing (chiefly in words ultimately of Latin and Greek origin, the pronunciation of many of which varies considerably):
(i) British English /iː/
, U.S. English /i/
, in e.g. aeon
, or (sometimes) abscissae
(ii) British English /ɪ/
, U.S. English /ə/
, in e.g. Aeneas
(iii) in U.S. English sometimes also /eɪ/
in e.g. aegis
(iv) in U.S. English /aɪ/
and in British English sometimes /ʌɪ/
, in e.g. abscissae
(as also regularly in words of Italian origin, as maestro
(v) British English /ɛː/
, U.S. English /ɛ/
and related words;
(vi) British and U.S. English /ɛ/
in e.g. haemorrhage
, representing British and U.S. English /aʊ/
in e.g. tao
; also, in gaol
, British and U.S. English /eɪ/
, representing (with varying distributions in different words) British English /ɑː/
, or /ɛː/
, U.S. English /æ/
, or /ɛ/
, in e.g. ma'am
Main developments within English.
The following gives a very brief outline of the origins and development of the main sounds represented by a
(i) The short vowel.
In Germanic, short a
corresponds both to a
in other branches of Indo-European (compare e.g. Latin ager
with the early forms and Germanic cognates at ) and (as a result of an early merger in Germanic) to o
(compare e.g. Latin hostis
with the early forms and Germanic cognates at ).
As a result of a very early sound change in English short a
(of whatever origin) in accented syllables was fronted to æ
except when followed by a nasal consonant (compare dæg
‘day’ with mann
‘man’, and on the latter see further discussion at ), although a
was later restored in open syllables before a following back vowel (compare within the paradigm of dæg
‘day’ the nominative and accusative singular forms dæg
alongside the nominative and accusative plural forms dagas
). In Old English a
were distinct phonemes, and were affected by neighbouring sounds in different ways which have profound effects on the subsequent histories of many words; in some dialects of Old English (Kentish and some Mercian varieties) æ
was also fronted further to e
. In Middle English the phonemic distinction between a
was lost, surviving instances of æ
(which had been neither affected by further sound changes nor fronted to e
) generally being merged with a
Sound changes have affected the reflex of Middle English a
in a number of words:
(i) after w
was rounded in e.g. wan
; this probably happened in the early 17th cent. or earlier, although even in standard English there was a good deal of variation in the 17th and 18th centuries, and later in some cases (compare swam
, past tense of , and also pronunciation history at , ); in some cases the resultant sound occurred in a lengthening environment, as in war
(and anomalously in water
show various different processes of lengthening of historically short a
in modern English; these changes have not all occurred in all varieties, and today provide significant distinctions between different national varieties of English (and in the case of the classes illustrated by bath
, considerable variation within standard British English).
A further source of /a/
in modern English is lowering of e
in late Middle English (as also in Anglo-Norman and Old French, Middle French), as in carve
, although the application of this sound change is very variable (compare
and ), and in some cases the e
spelling is retained even when the change in pronunciation to /a/
is found (compare ).
(ii) The long vowel.
The history of ā
is much less straightforward than that of the short sounds.
Owing to an early merger of ā
in Germanic, ā
in most other Indo-European languages corresponds to ō
in Germanic (see ).
The main source of Old English ā
is Germanic ai
: compare e.g. Old English stān
‘stone’ with the Germanic cognates listed at ; in the Middle English period this sound became rounded in southern and midland dialects, giving Middle English open ō
(see ); in the north and Scots this rounding did not occur, and Old English ā
is generally continued in Scots as /e/
(often spelt ai
, as in ain
, more commonly stane
), and in northern English varieties frequently as a falling diphthong with high first element, /iə/
Old English ǣ
as a spelling form represents sounds of two different origins with different distributions in the various Old English dialects. Firstly, it shows the reflex of Germanic ē
, corresponding to ā
in most other West Germanic (and North Germanic) languages; see e.g. the cognates listed at
In the dialects of Old English other than West Saxon this sound (often called ǣ 1
) was ē
rather than ǣ
, hence West Saxon dǣd
beside Anglian and Kentish dēd
. Secondly, ǣ
resulted from the i-mutation of ā
(although in Kentish this was further fronted to ē
), as in , which is hǣlan
in both West Saxon and Anglian; this sound is often called ǣ 2
. The reflexes of both ǣ 1
and ǣ 2
in modern English are mid or high vowels, generally spelt e
, or ee
, and their later history is therefore dealt with at
Middle English ā
therefore does not continue Old English ā
). Its main origins are instead:
(i) early Middle English lengthening of a
in open syllables in disyllabic words;
(ii) borrowing of words containing Anglo-Norman and Old French, Middle French ā
; also Anglo-Norman and Old French, Middle French au
in certain phonological contexts, as in save
As a result of the Great Vowel Shift this sound became raised to a mid height vowel and subsequently diphthongized; however, a
spellings were preserved as a result of the degree of standardization and conservatism by this stage found in the spelling system. (The new long low height vowel created by various lengthening processes after the Great Vowel Shift has already been described above.)
Brief notes on digraph spellings in modern English.
generally reflects: (i) Old English or early Middle English diphthongs formed from a low vowel before palatal g
, as in ; (ii) Anglo-Norman and Old French, Middle French ai
, as in
merged in Middle English (see ), words historically showing ei
sometimes show ai
spellings in modern English, as e.g. ,
generally reflects: (i) a low vowel before w
in Old English, as in
or ; (ii) Old English or early Middle English diphthongs formed from a low vowel before velar g
or the fricative /x/
, as in
or ; (iii) Anglo-Norman and Old French, Middle French au
, as in , ,
Modern spellings with ae
show no continuity with æ
spellings in Old English or early Middle English, but instead mostly show learned borrowings of Latin words showing (in classical Latin) the diphthong ae
. In some instances ae
in such words ultimately reflects substitution in Latin of ae
for Greek αι
in words borrowed into Latin from Greek; hence aether
as spellings of
Many words which historically showed either ae
spellings now always or predominantly show e
(as e.g. , ); ae
is retained in many proper names relating to the ancient world, such as Caesar
, and in some technical terms, such as (in British English) , as well as a few slightly commoner words, such as
The letter A
b. Music. The sixth note of the diatonic scale of C major, or the first note of the relative minor scale of C. Also:
(a) a key based on a scale which has A as its keynote;
(b) the pitch of a musical instrument which is a minor third lower than written pitch.The A above middle C is usually used as the basis for tuning and in modern music has a standard frequency of 440 Hz.
1609 J. Dowland tr. A. Ornithoparchus 22
In the first part set A Base, in the third D sol re, in the fifth A lamire.
1676 T. Mace xlii. 219
This next Line shall show you A-re, with all Its 3d's, 5th's, and 8th's, Natural.
1724 W. Turner 71
Of the natural Capacity of each of the seven Degrees of Sound, that there are but five of them, to wit, A, B, D, E and G, that will admit of a Flat; and five also, to wit, A, C, D, F, and G, that will admit of a Sharp.
1785 7 355/1
We have the minor third in the natural key of A.
1806 J. W. Callcott ii. 4
The Notes of Music are named from the first seven letters of the alphabet, A, B, C, D, E, F, G. When the Melody, or Tune, exceeds these seven, the same series of letters must be repeated.
1847 R. Platt iv. 71
The key of A minor (or rather its relative, C major) has no sharp in its signature.
1880 G. Grove I. 192
The beautiful and passionate Sonata in A which was inspired by and dedicated to his [sc. Beethoven's] friend Madame Ertmann.
1929 70 633/2
Leave F and A till the last. They involve the use of two toes followed by two heels... Work out a similar exercise in the key of A flat.
1953 Dec. 56/2
Gus..sounded an ‘A’ to give the fiddler his pitch for tuning.
1983 D. Etheridge i. 20
There are many places where the note c can be used on a basset clarinet in A to sound a.
2003 8 Sept. 22/3
She performs the Impromptus in G-flat Major and B-Flat Major and the Sonata in A Major..along with a selection of waltzes and ländler.
c. Reduplicated as AA, AAA, etc., as an extension of an alphabetical sequence (preceding A), esp. denoting one of a series of sizes or classes.
1877 J. T. Fanning 608
Lead pipes of weights as in class A are used ordinarily when the head of water on them does not exceed 75 feet; class AA when the head is from 75 to 150 feet ; and class AAA when the head..is great.
1893 J. M. Crawford tr. I. iii. 45
The manufactory produced..twist, weft and doubled yarns, class AAA, class AA and classes A, B and C.
1915 8 7
Both National and American Leagues agreed that players drafted from Class AA clubs should finish the season.
QualiCraft opera highlighted by holiday sparkle Sizes 3 to 10, AAAA through C.
1973 Dec. 133
Batteries are penlight size (AA) in some cameras and size AAA in others.
1997 13 Feb. 35/4
Dominion Bond Rating Service said it is assigning a rating of AA to British Columbia's 70-billion-yen issue of..Samurai bonds.
2002 20 June (Review section) 11/4
A company that caters to everyone from the most modestly sized (AA cup) to the stonkingly well-endowed (H cup).
d. Sociology. Denoting the highest (or formerly lowest) of a series of social classes. In later use spec. denoting the highest-earning socio-economic class for marketing purposes, including managerial and professional personnel. See also .
1887 50 329
A. The Lowest Class—Consists of some (so-called) labourers... The total counted in Class A are 6,882.
1889 C. Booth I. i. ii. 33
The 8 classes into which I have divided these people are: A. The lowest class of occasional labourers, and semi-criminals. B. Casual earnings—‘very poor’ [etc.].
1910 F. G. D'aeth in 3 270
The present class structure is based upon different standards of life... These varying standards tend to fall into seven groups..A. The Loafer..B. Low-skilled labour..C. Artizan..D. Smaller Shopkeeper and clerk..E. Smaller Business Class..F. Professional and Administrative Class..G. The Rich.
1936 G. Harrison & F. C. Mitchell xii. 59
Blue Symbols represent A grade—where chief income earner receives £10 per week or more.
1950 D. C. Jones in 1 51
It will simplify both our analysis and your classification if you begin by thinking in terms of five main social classes, which we have lettered in descending order A, B, C, D, E.
(Central Statistical Office)
No. 14. x. 142
Almost every household in social classes A and B possessed a dictionary in May 1982.
2004 J. D. Healey ix. 178
One anomaly relates to the finding that 15.9% of those in social class A express some intermittent problems with fuel poverty.
e. Education. Denoting the highest class of academic mark. Cf. .
1892 14 Apr. 63/1
Not a whit deterred by the fact of three E's and two D's at the mid years, she set out to make Harris take five A's at the finals.
1931 30 Dec. 6/5
An honour student must receive all A's and B's.
1978 21 Mar. 3/1
The university is inviting applications for entry next September only from those who expect to get A or B grades at A level.
1988 B. Orser iii. 106
She studied her brains out every night and got As in everything.
2009 S. Faulks 22
Although the pupils regularly came near the top of the national league of exam results, most taking home a full house of A-stars and A's, they had little idea of spelling or grammar.
f. Chiefly British. Denoting the highest category of road below a motorway.
1921 29 Oct. 829/2
Those roads, however, which have already received numbers are all of the first, or A, category... Six boundary roads radiating from London are taken as the basis. Road A1 is that from London to Edinburgh; A2 runs from London to Dover; A3 London to Portsmouth.
1953 17 Sept. 11/2
It is virtually impossible for a stranger to decipher the geography of many industrial towns once the A-road has been left.
1988 Dec. 574/3
Some atlases show..motorways in blue with white road numbers, and primary A-roads in green with yellow road numbers.
20 June 16
Villages will be brought to a virtual standstill by rat-runners..when the busy A4 is closed to traffic..next month.
g. Denoting a series of international standard paper sizes, each with a fixed rectangular shape (the length being 41.4 per cent greater than the width) and with twice the surface area of the next size in the series, as A0, A1, A2, etc. Cf. (v), .
(National Bureau Statistics)
The discussions resulted in the setting up of a so-called A series of paper sizes... Size A4 of this series is the standard letter size.
1932 3 203/2
The European main or A-series of paper sizes... The basic sheet with an area of one square meter is designated A0 (A zero); the next smaller sheet by A1; half of this by A2, etc.
1937 E. J. Labarre 277/1
The basic sizes are therefore: A-series = A0 = 841 × 1189 mm; B-series = B0 = 1000 × 1414 mm; C-series = C0 = 917 × 1297 mm.
1962 F. T. Day vii. 71
At present there is much discussion of the advantages of what are termed A and B paper sizes.
1982 25 Oct. i. 12/7
The new chassis..is about the size of an A4 sheet of paper.
2006 5 June 32/2
The flat..was stocked with two sizes of stationery: U.S. Letter and the thinner, taller A4 that is standard in Europe.
Symbolic uses (now usually written without a following point).
Of various English words.
b. In form A (without point). As a brand or mark indicating that a person has been convicted of adultery: adulteress, adulterer, adultery. Cf. . Now historical.
The Court doth censure them as followeth: That..they shall weare..two letters, viz., AD, for adulteres, daly, Vpon the outeside of the vppermost garment.]
Its ordered that mis Batcheller for her adultery shall..be branded with the letter A.
An Act against, and for the punishment of Adultery... Both of them shall be..stigmatized, or burnt on the forehead with the letter A, on a hot iron; and each of them shall wear the capital letter A, on the back of their outside garment.
1850 N. Hawthorne ii. 66
Hester Prynne,..who stood on the scaffold of the pillory, an infant on her arm, and the letter A, in scarlet, fantastically embroidered with gold thread.
1906 J. Schouler iii. 26
That same year [sc. 1771], in New Haven, a mulatto was branded with an ‘A’ in the forehead for adultery with a white woman.
2000 L. J. Kreitzer 181
We are given several close-up shots of both his branded ‘A’ and the embroidered letter on her bodice.
c. Grammar. In form a or (occasionally) A.
(b) active (of a verb). Now rare.
1735 W. Pardon sig. B2/2
Abject (a.), mean, base, vile, wretched, miserable.
1782 J. Entick p. viii
An explanation of the several contractions used in this work. a. and act. a verb active.
1838 J. Bosworth p. ccvii
v. a. or act. verb active.
1884 C. R. Lanman 293
List of Abbreviations..a. adjective.
1904 C. B. Waite 42
a stands for adjective, n for noun. Other abbreviations will be easily understood.
1945 G. S. Earlie 7
a. or adj. adjective.
2009 G. Wilcock ii. 27
Label every token with a part-of-speech label... Adjective (A or Adj), Adverb (Adv) [etc.]
1828 N. Webster (at cited word)
In commerce, A. stands for accepted, as in case of a bill of exchange.
1884 at A.
A., a.,..stands for..accepted (of bills).
1945 G. S. Earlie 7
a. or acc...accepted.
e. Cards. In form A (without point). Ace.
1885 27 Apr. 2/3
Whist Problem—..K, 4 C.; K, 7, 4 S.; A, 9 D.
1937 J. Crane 65
Suppose your partner opens with 2-C, and holds this hand:S.—A K J 8 6.
2000 J. D. Andrews
Certainly an A of hearts can be useful, but not a K or Q of hearts (without the Ace).
f. In form A (also a) (without point). Ampere.
1889 S. R. Bottone
Or if we like to use the initials of volts, ampères, and ohms..we may write V/
R = A, or Volts/
Ohms = Ampères.
Ampère (in sub-units) = a.
1978 Apr. 1796/3
There is also a mains voltage adjuster and twin 2.5A protective mains fuses.
2000 K. Johnson et al. xvi. 201/1
Only certain fuse values are available: e.g. 3 A, 10 A and 13 A.
g. British. In form A (without point). Adult, denoting a film, or a classification given to a film, considered to be suitable only for adults or children accompanied by an adult. Now historical.The A rating for films was abolished in 1982.
1914 16 Feb. 6/2
Since the inception of the board [sc. British Board of Film Censors]..627 have been passed for ‘public’ exhibition with the ‘A’ certificate.
1936 13 Dec. 14/1
Cinema Theatres. Academy, Ox.-st. Finnish Epic ‘Fredlos’ (A).
1962 H. C. Bentwich iv. 31
A notice flashed on the screen saying that the film he was going to see had been passed as an ‘A’ film.
2001 L. K. Greiff 235
Quite suggestive.., the segment had to be deleted in order for the film to receive Great Britain's A rating (Adult; no unaccompanied child admitted).
h. In form A (without point). Australian, in A$, $A, and †£A.
Total imports, 1935–36..£A104,687,000.
1941 27 Sept. 3/4
In Queensland, no post-war credit remains from an income of £A.5,0; in Victoria, the credit is £655.
1963 A. Ross iv. 99
The four Test stars..whose appearance cost the Tasmanian authorities £A300, again individually and in bulk failed to earn their keep.
1996 28 Feb. 3/1
Mr Connell..once earnt a record A$ 100 million broking fee.
2002 15 Apr. 24/1
A fund manager..can gain vicarious exposure to the US dollar market by buying $US bonds that have been repackaged as $A notes.
i. Science. In form a (without point). As prefix, in symbols of units of measurement: = .
The following prefixes should be used to indicate decimal fractions of multiples of a unit..femto..f..atto..a.
1992 57 348
1·3707884 attometers as the central radius of electronic ether curvature; H∗(½re)−H(0) = 49·335745 + 0·53678593 = 118·4111 am.
2008 S. Grimes & Ø. G. Martinsen
A monovalent ion corresponds to an electric charge of 0·16aC (1 attocoulomb = 10−18C).
j. British colloquial. In form A (without point). A level. Usually in plural.
1979 May 1594/2
Lorraine went to the RNIB's Chorleywood College (with six ‘O’ levels and studying for her ‘A’s).
1998 L. R. Banks 64
Things had not been so bad till she'd failed her A's at the comp.
2002 P. Hodkinson & M. Bloomer in K. Evans et al. ii. 37
Can I change one of my As to an AS?
Of Latin and Italian words.
b. ante (= before), esp. when preceding a date. See also
1807 I. 2/1
A single stands for..ante [etc.].
1889 F. M. Warren viii. 86
Georges Chastellain, a. 1415–1475.
1995 C. L. Allen App. C. 480
The MED gives the date of composition as a1250.
AB n. Medicine denoting the blood type of the ABO blood group system characterized by the presence of both the A and B erythrocyte antigens (agglutinogens); frequently attributive.
1927 88 1422/1
Dr. Karl Landsteiner has suggested the substitution of the well known letters O, A, B and AB for the Jansky numbers I, II, III and IV and the Moss numbers IV, II, III and I. The letters will..express the actual constitution of the blood corpuscles with respect to iso-agglutination, as far as it concerns the separation of the groups.
1962 T. G. Hiebert
ii. ix. 169
Type AB persons may receive moderate amounts of any type of blood.
Obama travels with a six-strong medical team who have supplies of his AB blood.
[ < + , the sigla used to identify two different manuscripts of the early 13th cent., MS Cambridge, Corpus Christi 402 and MS Oxford, Bodley 34, which have a high degree of similarity both orthographically and linguistically, though they were produced by different scribes]
the early Middle English dialect of the west midlands used in two manuscripts of the early 13th cent., MS Cambridge, Corpus Christi 402 and MS Oxford, Bodley 34; frequently attributive in AB language.
1929 J. R. R. Tolkien in XIV. vi. 108
I will even suggest here that the unity of (A) and (B) will bear minute analysis, and leave a residuum of discrepancy which, in view of the quite different textual history and value of B, is negligible. The two manuscripts are in fact in one language and spelling (AB).
1967 42 415
In the discussions attached to each section of the book and in tables which dramatize the results of the discussions, the phonological history of AB is traced.
1977 28 316
He remarks on the dialectal location of the AB language made by Tolkien..and argues..for an even closer association with the NW. Herefordshire-SW. Shropshire area.
1996 J. Smith vii. 147
A form such as wrecche ‘wretch’..is assigned to the strong declension in AB-language.
2003 R. Dance in Y. Wada iv. 78
We should not allow the understandable, comfortable impression of authorial voice that permeates the AB texts to divert us from the plain fact that they are written documents.
AB n. (chiefly in plural) a member of either of the two highest social-economic classes A and B (also as adj.) (see sense ).
1966 10 Aug. 212/1
We have shown..that the ABs watch the same kind of programmes as everybody else.
1969 31 July 164
Such trusts appeal primarily to AB readers.
1976 1 Jan. 5/1
Upper middle class ABs living in the prosperous southern counties.
1986 18 Jan. 8/4
The social niceties..are very A, B. When I say ‘dick’, Liz pounces.
30 Aug. (Media section) 12/1
But a few media groups are frustrated with what could be called bias among advertising buyers over their AB tendencies.
A chromosome n. Genetics
(a) a chromosome reckoned as the first in a classification varying from author to author (now disused);
(b) a chromosome of the set which normally occurs in all the members of a species.
1909 43 243
For each pair in the cells of a given individual there is a homologous pair in the cells of other individuals of the same species.... We may designate one of these pairs as A chromosomes, a second as B chromosomes, etc., the same pairs as a rule being found in different individuals of the same species.
1927 14 80
The A-chromosomes are shown in this nucleus in the lower part of fig. 15. The second large pair (B-chromosomes) are represented in figure 20.
[1928 L. F. Randolph in 41 102
In maize have been found supernumerary chromosomes of three types: a) Duplicates of members of the typical set... Type-A chromosomes appear in the progeny of triploids crossed with diploids.]
1941 26 609
In somatic metaphases the B chromosomes are readily distinguishable from the A chromosomes.
1977 I. H. Herskowitz
A chromosomes will synapse with similar, but nonhomologous, B chromosomes.
2009 J. A. Coyne 242
The plant arising from this union will have eleven chromosomes. And it will be sterile, for while each A chromosome has a pairing partner, none of the B chromosomes do.
A-mode n. chiefly Medicine a mode of operation or functioning that is first in a group of two or more; spec. the mode of operation in A-scan ultrasound imaging; frequently attributive; cf. .
1946 93 iiia. 931/2
These three modes [of vibration in a microwave resonator] were originally designated by Sayers as the AB-mode, the A-mode and the B-mode.
1966 16 355/1
The term A-mode ultrasonics signifies that returning ultrasonic energy is represented by height of deflections on the ordinate of the oscilloscope screen.
1994 P.-M. Klews in K.-J. Wolf & F. Fobbe i. 4
Figure 1.4 shows the B-mode image of a liver and a gall bladder. One ultrasound scan line is displayed in A-mode.
15 Apr. 30
A commonly used A-mode ultrasound machine..was also used to estimate fat depth.
A-shaped adj. having the shape of a capital letter A; cf. sense .
1844 H. M. Noad
On the shaft is mounted an A shaped frame.
A-frame, the A-shaped support for the cylinder-beam and cross-head guides of a vertical engine.
2005 C. Holmes xv. 111
When they got to the A-shaped greenhouse building, Gil led the way down the rows of newly potted seedlings.
A-side n. (the music recorded on) the more important side of a single (). Cf. .
1937 Feb. 14/1
The ‘A’ side is ‘Rockin' Chair’, which was originally coupled with ‘Barnacle Bill, the Sailor’.
1942 28 Feb. 61
The A side is a catchy melody.
1968 5 Jan. 18/4
The seven-man band arrived at the London recording studio to make the ‘A’ side of a new ‘single’.
1984 1 Dec. 6/5
The A-side features the inimitable talents of Jim Thirlwell on lead vocal.
2003 J. Dawson & S. Propes xvii. 138
The A-side is surf-rock's national anthem.
A-star n. British Education a grade awarded in GCSE and A-level examinations (from 1994 and 2008 respectively) for performance exceeding the standards denoted by an ordinary A (also written A*).
1994 3 Sept. 3/3
Of the top 50 British schools obtaining most A and new A-star grades, 34 were single-sex girls' schools.
2001 18 Mar. (Britain Uncovered Suppl.) 60/1
We thought he was no good at French but he got an A-star.
2009 S. Faulks 22
Although the pupils regularly came near the top of the national league of exam results, most taking home a full house of A-stars and A's, they had little idea of spelling or grammar.
[ < the initial letter of and + , after ]
a test explosion of an atomic bomb.
A-test, a test explosion of an atomic bomb.
1984 29 Aug. 8/2
The A-test that tipped the balance of power Moscow's way.
2001 28 Apr. 10/7
Papers back A-test victim claims.
Many of the terms given here without points are also frequently used with points, and vice versa. Less commonly, variation between upper- and lower-case letters may occur where the initialism is not a proper name.See also , , , , , , , , , , , , , etc. (as main entries).
AA n. chiefly U.S. Politics administrative assistant.
1957 28 Jan. 34/1
A.A.'s make up ‘quotes’ for inquiring reporters and whisper strategic advice during floor debates.
1989 D. W. Ewing 149
The AA would write up the complaint when it came to the office and set the wheels in motion for a thorough investigation.
2002 G. Reeher & M. Mariani 32
The AA is responsible for all the office's operations and serves as a top advisor to the member on both policy and political issues.
AA n. originally U.S. Alcoholics Anonymous; (also) a member of this organization.
1940 5 May ii. c5/4
Attention was drawn to the movement recently by a dinner that John D. Rockefeller, jr..gave for 60 A.A.'s at the Union Club in New York.
1943 (Alcoholic Foundation) 1
As an active member of A.A. since 1939, I feel myself a useful member of the human race at last.
1977 M. French ii. x. 89
I keep thinking I just have to get through today, you know? Like an AA.
23 July 32
I am an alcoholic but, with the help of AA and friends, I have not had a drink for four years.
(also A-A, A/A)
anti-aircraft; cf. The abbreviation occurs in a work ostensibly dated 1909, E. Hospitalier Vocabulaire Technique, Industriel & Commercial (new ed.) 538, but this title-page date is thought to be an error for 1919.
The abbreviations used in the lists are as follows:..A.A., Anti-air-craft guns.
1943 184 107/2
A.-A. barrage was audible from twenty miles away.
1978 No. 64 23/1
Self-propelled A/A guns.
a1985 P. White
As the gun had AA mounting and sights it was difficult to keep the rapid bursts of fire consistently on target.
A.A. n. North American Education Associate of (also in) Arts.
1857 15 Dec. 464/1
Young men, whose age does not exceed 18 years, may, by successfully passing an examination in two or more..subjects,..receive the degree of A.A. (Associate of Arts).
Fully accredited. Awards A.A. degree. College transfer, terminal, and pre-professional courses.
2001 J. E. Rosenbaum iii. 66
The A.A. is a shorter and perhaps easier degree than a B.A.
AA n. Automobile Association.
1905 14 Oct. 443/1
Commonsense precautions taken with regard to villages, and at dangerous points, do not concern the A.A., for therein it is considered lies the duty of the policeman.
1937 July liv/2
Victoria Hotel, A.A. H. & C. Electricity.
4 Apr. 11
You contacted the AA for a routemap and the information you received was a loose leaf folder stapled at the top.
AAA n. Amateur Athletic Association.
1880 Oct. 273
This year has seen the formation of the Amateur Athletic Association.., the A.A.A.
1955 20 July 3/5
B. S. Hewson, the A.A.A. mile champion.
1999 5 Jan. 25/2
Her image had been tarnished by..the local Amateur Athletics Association (AAA)..as well as the sports ministry.
AAA n. American Automobile Association.
1902 May 1945/1
Constitution and by-laws of the A.A.A.
1955 4 Aug. 10/2
Colonel Hallington, the chairman of the A.A.A. contest board, said that the decision had been prompted by the accident at Le Mans.
23 Nov. viii. 3/1
The AAA is revamping its Web sites to compete with online travel agencies.
AAA n. Military (originally U.S.) anti-aircraft artillery; cf. .
1943 31 Mar. 13/2
Major Gen. Sanderford Jarman, commanding general of the AAA command.
1985 12 Mar. a8/5
The airfield was protected by light AAA.
28 Apr. 11
Despite the AAA fire, the Harriers pressed home their attack.
AAF n. Auxiliary Air Force.
1925 15 Jan. 32/2
The designating numbers of the A.A.F. units will start with 600.
1991 June 86/1
Forty-one AAF planes fell in combat, about half to flak, but 184 were lost to other causes, largely weather-related.
AAM n. air-to-air missile.
1950 Mar. 158/1
AAM is thus Air to Air. The M stands for Missile.
1990 D. J. Calvert (‘Aircraft Illustr.’ Special) 21/3
Even more impressive was the fitting of the necessary wiring and switches to allow the GR3 to mount a pair of AIM-9G Sidewinder AAM on the outer pylons.
A and E n.
Medicine (chiefly British and New Zealand) accident and emergency (department).
1966 19 Mar. p. lii
Senior House Officer in Surgery required... 54-bedded unit with O.P.D. Clinics and some work in A. and E. Department.
1970 S.W. Regional Hosp. Board: Dept. Design Ser. III. 68
For X-ray Sub-dept. if main X-ray Dept. is not adjacent to A. & E. Dept.
1994 I. Welsh Soft Touch in 51
Ah hud tae go tae the A and E at the Infirmary.
2002 3 Apr. 56/1
I've given countless people CPR in A&E.
A & M n.
(also A and M)
U.S. (in the names of colleges and universities) Agricultural and Mechanical.
1865 i. 65
GW Aderhold, A. & M. College, Lexington, Ky.
1954 22 July 54
Alex Burl, a sprinter-halfback from Colorado A. and M. College, was signed by the Chicago Cardinals.
2001 27 Aug. i. 8/3
At Texas A & M, Clark puts the Aggies through ‘jingle-jangle’ drills.
A & M adj. and n.
(also A and M)
(a) adj. ancient and modern (as postmodifier in Hymns A & M);
(b) n. used elliptically for Hymns A & M.Hymns Ancient and Modern is the title of a hymnal used in the Church of England, first published in 1861.
[1863 O. Shipley Contents p. xxxiv
An ancient Anthem. O Esca viatorum..H. A. & M.]
1864 O. Shipley
Contents p. xli
O Esca Viatorum. An ancient Anthem..Hymns A. and M.
1869 J. Miller
The rendering in ‘A. and M.’ is altered by the compilers.
1999 80 304/2
The tunes chosen in Hymns A & M were often of a generic type that could well have been interchanged.
14 Mar. 29
The Hymns Ancient and Modern version is by Edward Caswall. He published translations of 200 Latin hymns in Lyra Catholica (1848) and two dozen are included in A&M.
A and R n.
(also A & R)
artist and repertoire (also repertory; occasionally recording); (frequently attributive) designating a person in a recording company who selects performers, arranges recordings, etc.
1948 19 June 21/1
He has been operating as the firm's Coast a. and r. man. He will be..supervising popular, hillbilly, race, hot jazz, international and other specialties.
1958 26 May 7/6
A and R men, dee-jays, pluggers—to use the abbreviated titles by which artists and recording managers, disc jockeys and exploitation men are known.
1990 F. Dannen
Even the best A&R—artist and repertoire—staff in the world couldn't save you if radio gave you the cold shoulder.
2005 Winter 125/4
A and R men will not be at your gigs. These people will be at other gigs when you play.
AAVE n. Linguistics African-American Vernacular English; cf. .
1993 68 371
The theoretical and political implications of Labov's study for scholarship on the historical and current status of AAVE were wide-ranging.
2003 E. Richardson i. 19
Sociolinguists have laid the groundwork for researchers to investigate the ways in which we might employ AAVE in literacy education.
A.B. n. able seaman (formerly able-bodied seaman).
1810 C. James
II. (at cited word)
Seaman, Able-bodied seaman, a sailor capable of taking both helm and lead... He is rated A. B. on board the ships of war.
1845 6 Nov. 7/6
The initials A.B. signify able seaman; O.S., ordinary seaman; R.M.A., Royal Marine Artillery.
1894 Gloss. Terms Evid. Royal Comm. Labour 36/2 in (C. 7063–VC) XXXVIII. 411
Disrating, A nautical term for ‘disranking’, that is, reducing from a higher rank to a lower, such as lowering a man from A.B. to ordinary seaman, or from fireman to trimmer.
1962 ‘C. S. Forester’ iv. 41
Of her hundred and fifty hands no fewer than a hundred were prime seamen, rated A.B.
1990 J. McPhee 97
An A.B. gets five dollars and forty-seven cents an hour for not eating lunch, if mandatory work on deck keeps him away from the food. It's called penalty time.
[graphic abbreviation of post-classical Latin artium baccalaureus (1569 or earlier); compare baccalaureus artium (1517 in a British source); also bacallarius facultatis artium (1425 in a British source), bachilarius in artibus (1264 in a British source)]
now chiefly U.S. Bachelor of Arts (cf. ).
1697 E. Polsted (title page)
In an Essay. By Ezekiel Polsted, A.B.
1721 N. Amhurst
No. 50. 273
Mr. Scurlock, A.B. fellow of Jesus-college, and a member of the constitution-club was..disgraced..for mentioning the word king in his declamation.
1773 29 Apr. 2/2
Last Friday departed this life..John Alden, A.B., aged 22.
1842 19 429
A man may..write A.B. after his name, and even A.M., and be no great things either.
Educational qualifications equivalent to the Harvard A.B.
1966 M. Pei 46
And finally to my appointment to the Romance Department of City College..two years before I finally achieved my A.B. from..the same college.
2004 No. 4. 946/2
Following his AB degree, George enlisted in officers' training with the Coast Guard.
ABC n. now historical Aerated Bread Company; (also) a cafeteria or shop run by the company.
1889 E. Dowson 17 Mar.
I did go down to the ABC after leaving my atrocity with you on Friday.
1894 15 Dec. 285/1
I pass an A.B.C., Where I purchase two or three Cakes and scones.
1941 E. Blunden 120
Afterwards we went to a Lyons tea-shop, at which he [sc. Hardy] was a little alarmed, being used only to an A.B.C.
2006 G. Shaw et al. in J. Benson & L. Ugolini iii. 86
Whilst a typical bakery might produce around 200,000 pounds of bread per year, ABC methods could produce ten times this from just one machine.
ABC n. American Broadcasting Company.
1929 Apr. 372/2
Adolph E. Linden, President of the American Broadcasting Company which operates the ABC Western Network.
1948 6 Sept. 41/1
The progress of ABC, a relative newcomer in the field, typifies the rapid expansion of television facilities this year.
The first era arrived..via bunny ears and national broadcast networks, such as NBC and ABC.
ABC n. Australian Broadcasting Corporation (formerly Commission, Company).
The widespread ramifications of the A.B.C.
1957 ‘N. Shute’ iv. 132
The A.B.C.'s been doing a good job in telling people just the way things are.
2006 12 July 20/2
The ABC studios at Toowong in Brisbane could fetch more than $45 million.
ABCA n. now historical Army Bureau of Current Affairs, an organization providing troops with information about current affairs during the 1939–45 war.
1942 (Cmd. 6384) 44
ABCA came into existence in September, 1941, to remedy this ignorance and to mitigate boredom.
1995 A. Croft in J. Fyrth iii. 202
Despite opposition from Churchill, ABCA material developed an increasingly radical strain, evident in the Why We Fight series.
ABH n. British Law actual bodily harm; cf. .
1975 P. Morris & F. Beverly 149
Theft, burglary, aid and abet rape, ABH.
1992 6 Jan. 14/7
You can nick me for ABH.., or whatever you're going to get me nicked for, I'll admit it.
2003 3 Nov. 9/2
The 20-year-old..singer looked shaken..after the jury convicted her of ABH.
ABM n. originally U.S. anti-ballistic missile (cf. ).
1963 16 Sept. 14
Soviets may have ultimate ABM.
2002 K. Matinuddin xii. 242
The possibility of an aircraft being intercepted is greater than the interception of missiles, at least till such time that India acquires an anti-ballistic missile (ABM) capability.
ABO adj. Medicine designating a system of classifying human blood based on the presence or absence of A and B antigens on red blood cells, resulting in four blood types, A, B, AB, and O.
1937 J. C. Thomas in 14 Aug. 317/2
By far the most complete investigations of the heredity of the blood groups have been made with the ABO system.
10 Nov. 10
Everyone has heard about ABO blood types and how important it is to match a recipient's blood type with the same type of donor blood.
ABS n. Chemistry acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, a hard composite thermoplastic used to make rigid moulded products such as car bodies and cases for computers; frequently attributive.
1957 Oct. 27
Royalite (the industry's standard for A.B.S. plastics) is extremely light, yet so durable it withstands everyday abuse.
Ease of fabrication by a variety of methods..has led to the development of new uses for ABS resins.
2004 J. Emsley
Polycarbonate will blend with other polymers, and the blend with ABS..is even stronger than polycarbonate itself.
[perhaps originally after German ABS, initialism < the initial letters of Antiblockiersystem]
Motoring anti-lock (occasionally anti-locking) braking (or brake) system.
1980 14 Sept. 2 f/4
ABS is meant to make safe driving easier, by avoiding crashes.
2003 Jan. 28/2
ABS won't always stop a vehicle in a shorter distance than conventional brakes.
ABV n. alcohol by volume, used to express the percentage of alcohol in an alcoholic beverage.
1985 8 Apr. b9/4
Any beverage containing less than 0.5 per cent ABV is considered non-intoxicating by the liquor control legislation of all the provinces and territories.
2003 I. Banks
I've already got a Rare Malts Edition 23-year-old at 53.6 abv.
AC n. and adj.
(a) n. air conditioning;
(b) adj. air-conditioned.
1962 G. Meckler & M. Meckler in 55
Decrease in AC Cost as % TBC.
1970 Nov. 59/3
Kalamazoo-Southgate Motor-Inn:..124 A/C rooms, htd. pool.
2002 22 Sept. 2/4
With the advent of the Metro, people can look forward to AC coaches, faster commuting, and pollution-free travel.
2008 A. Adiga 69
This was a beautiful, modern car, with all the necessary comforts: a speaker system, A/C, nice glossy leather seats.
aircraftman; cf. .
1928 25 May 6/7
Lance-Corporal Bosworth and A./C. Mallett, 3 defeats each.
1963 8 Mar. 12/7
Airmen ranks to disappear are master technician, senior technician, corporal technician, and aircraftman 2nd class (AC 2).
2001 D. F. Clark vi. 178
AC Lott, for God's sake! AC Lott! This is the Controller at Dirleton here... Shift your bloody arse, Airman!
a.c. n. alternating current; cf. .
1891 July 124/2
I then take a smooth-running, faradic instrument of mild current (No. 1 Kidder's Preferred, A. C. Current).
1903 31 Dec. 962/1
The Ferranti A.C. Meter.
1958 June 135/1
The generator delivers 1200 watts of continuous duty 60-cycle a.c.
18 May (What's On) 17
Pick up some..table-lamp-type a.c. cable from your hardware store.
[graphic abbreviation of post-classical Latin ante christum (1544 or earlier)]
now rare before Christ; cf.
1690 I. Newton Let. 14 Nov. in
He praises the Codex Lobiensis written A.C. 1084.
1834 Oct. 426
In AC 135, an insurrection of the slaves in Sicily happened.
1975 I. Gershevitch in J. R. Hinnells I. vi. 69
Those Parthians who in the third century a.c. were converted to Manichaeism identified the Manichaean god who had led the Third Emanation..with Mithra.
AC n. (with reference to wine, or some foods) appellation contrôlée.
1965 M. A. Amerine & V. L. Singleton xiii. 199
In France the appellations contrôlées are the most respected (often abbreviated A.C.).
1991 Aug. 23/1
The latest Clarets to join the range promise well for the future. Château Malard, AC Bordeaux Supérieur 1987 is a bargain.
2003 Aug. 102/2
In the outlying fields, Charolais cattle graze beside the goats that produce the region's other great AC, Crottin de Chavignol cheese.
AC n. athletic (or athletics) club.
1868 H. F. Wilkinson iv. 66
BB Connolly, formerly of the Cambridge University AC, got off best and won as he liked in the 100 yards.
1956 Nov. 65/2
When we drew for lanes, the other first leg men stared at me suspiciously, suspecting some skulduggery on the part of the New York AC.
8 Apr. 89
Tamworth Athletics Club stars began their build-up to the summer's major events by competing at Mansfield Harriers AC's Track and Field Open Meeting over the Easter weekend.
AC n. Companion of the Order of Australia.
A.C... Companion of the Order of Australia.
26 Jan. 3
His contribution to defence policy was particularly recognised in his being awarded the AC.
A.C.C. n. Physiology now rare anodal (or anodic) contraction, contraction of a muscle to which the anode is attached when an electrical circuit is closed; an instance of this.
[1874 G. V. Poore in 9 May 649/1
On making a slight further increase of intensity, contraction occurs with anodal closure also (A. C.).]
1876 G. V. Poore v. 95
The anodal closure contraction (A. C. C.) soon becomes very marked, and equals or even surpasses the cathodal closure contraction (C. C. C.).
1905 W. R. Williams 327
Ascending currents that are somewhat stronger cause a contraction at the closure of the circuit, called the anodic closure contraction, A.C.C.
1920 R. Burton-Opitz xiii. 155
The two making or closure contractions (C.C.C. and A.C.C.) must be stronger than the two breaking or opening contractions (A.O.C. and C.O.C.)
2003 R. L. Gupta 425
A change of polarity is seen in the affected muscles in which anodal closure contraction (ACC) becomes greater than KCC.
ACCM n. now historical (also with pronunciation , ) Advisory Council for the Church's Ministry.
Candidates for courses..are specially selected by ACCM.
12 Feb. 54
In 1971 he began a 15-year involvement on the Advisory Council for the Church's Ministry (ACCM).
ACF n. South African Military Active Citizen Force.
1912 Diagram Syst. Mil. Def. S. Afr. Union
in 24 May 14/3
A. C. F. Reserve, Class ‘A’.
1989 Oct. 8/4
In August I was in the ACF and my battalion was at its annual camp in the north of Scotland.
1998 24 747
Reference was made to Gideon Scheepers shot for wearing khaki in the Anglo-Boer War. The Minister of Justice hotly denied the ACF's contention: the colour of the uniform was ‘not khaki, but drab’.
A.C.H. n. R.A.F. (now historical and rare) = .
1925 T. E. Lawrence 7 Oct.
Five are fitters, five are riggers, five are A.C.H.'s.
1941 ‘L. A. C. Errant’ iv. 18
A.C.H., ‘Aircraft Hand’..designates as a rule the non-tradesman.
ACL n. Anatomy anterior cruciate ligament (of the knee).
1957 129 221
ACL, anterior cruciate ligament.
1991 Mar. 122/1
The new generation of toepieces with upward release capability might help to reduce the incidence of at least boot-induced ACL injuries.
15 Jan. iii. 4/5
Alabama senior forward Chuck Davis tore both the ACL and MCL in his right knee and will miss the rest of the season.
ACLU n. American Civil Liberties Union.
(Amer. Civil Liberties Union)
Receipts and Disbursements by American Civil Liberties Union from April 16, 1922, to July 31, 1922... A.C.L.U. Receipt Numbers 2155, 2162, [etc.].
1936 Dec. 385/2
The fiction of the ‘Liberalism’ of the ACLU has been firmly implanted in the popular mind.
2004 1 Sept. 18/4
We wanted to..remind you that all media calls should be referred to the ACLU press office.
ACP n. African, Caribbean, and Pacific (countries), spec. the signatories to the Lomé Conventions (signed between 1975 and 1989) and the Cotonou Agreement (of 2000), establishing aid and trade cooperation between these countries and the member states of the European Union.
1974 12 June 10/5
Negotiations had been going on between the ‘associable’ countries—the African, Caribbean and Pacific states known as ACP—and the Community for some time.
1978 J. Paxton
A.C.P. bananas were to enjoy duty-free access and were also to be included in the Stabex scheme.
1983 4 Oct. 14
It offers some protection against declining prices for a range of ACP commodities through the Stabex mechanism; and it is committed to buying 1.3m tons of ACP sugar a year.
2006 C. Bretherton & J. Vogler
The Cotonou Agreement requires that six regional groupings of the ACP negotiate distinctive Economic Partnership Agreements (EPA) with the Union.
ACS n. Medicine (now rare) antireticular cytotoxic serum.
1942 B. E. Linberg in A. A. Bogomolets 154
Everywhere where a weakening of the physiological system of the connective tissue takes place it can be activized by means of ACS.
1946 W. M. Mandel iii. 32
Thousands of wounded Red Armymen in deep shock and probably doomed to death were saved by this ‘ACS’ serum.
1972 Y. Halperin tr. L. V. Polezhaev ii. v. 283
It has been shown that in small doses, ACS can stimulate regeneration of damaged tubular bones in rabbits.
ACT n. British advance corporation tax.
1972 25 Sept. 378/1
The three aims of avoiding transitional penalties, securing a windfall ACT (advance corporation tax) relief for dividends paid before that date and escaping an ACT forfeit for dividends paid after it.
1998 21 Mar. 36/2
At present, firms pay each financial year's tax (apart from any ACT already paid) in one lump.
ACT n. U.S. Education American College Testing (or Test).A proprietary name.
1959 8 Sept. 6/1
ACT will charge each student $3, and levy no charge against the high school.
1975 Mar. 79/1
The ACT has four parts: mathematics, English, social studies and natural sciences.
2006 B. Fey ii. 52
An officer could enter the student's ACT score into the regression formula and predict his GPA.
ACT n. Australian Capital Territory.
2007 L. Wallis et al. in C. Smith & H. Burke v. 147
Weather conditions in the ACT can change rapidly, so when in the field make sure that you have adequate clothing, water and first-aid supplies.
ACTH n. Medicine adrenocorticotropic hormone.
1943 12 282
Adrenocorticotrophic Hormone (ACTH).
1977 5 Nov. 955/2
Mean A.C.H.T. levels were raised..in addisonian outpatients on cortisone acetate.
2003 D. R. Mottram
ACTH is produced and secreted by the corticotroph cells of the anterior pituitary.
ACTRA n. Alliance of Canadian Television and Radio Artists.
1963 31 Aug. (TV & Radio guide) 12/3
They were referred to AFM and ACTRA, the unions involved.
2002 W. Pitman vi. 110
Best Television Program of the Year, ACTRA Award.
ACTT n. Association of Cinematograph, Television, and Allied Technicians.
1957 23 5/3
The new A.C.T.T. badges and brooches can be obtained from Head Office.
8 Sept. 45
Murray worked extensively with the film technicians' union, ACTT, to open up greater flexibility for the independent film workshop movement.
ACTU n. Australian (formerly also Australasian) Council of Trade Unions.
1928 May 108
The 1927 Congress..set itself to construct machinery that might act adequately in the field of Interstate industrial disputes. Hence the new Australasian Council of Trades Unions (A.C.T.U.).
1972 J. Belfrage in G. W. Turner vi. 108
This is another local reference..to the active pro-labour work of the new President of the ACTU.
2005 12 Aug. 19/1
The ACTU said the criticism from a South Australian Industrial Relations Court judge was an example of the failings of the federal government's workplace agreements.
ACV n. air-cushion vehicle (see ).
1962 81 113
Free-moving ACVs will be going into business also, together with hydrofoil craft.
6 May 4
ACVs work on land or sea and are the fastest ships in the world (60mph).
ACW n. aircraftwoman; cf. .
1942 J. A. Hammerton
1943 K. B. Beauman v. 57
A plotter, A.C.W. Cooper, told me about the attack on North Weald.
1966 M. L. Settle v. 97
Well. ACW Settle, we have been a bit of a fool, haven't we?
26 Sept. 36
‘After the event we had..a barbecue to say thanks to everyone,’ ACW Kelly said.
AD n. Military active duty.
1942 1 Feb. ii. 75
‘DP following Reserve Officers ordered to AD.’.. Written out this reads: ‘By direction of the President, the following Reserve Officers are ordered to active duty.’
1990 7 Sept. 38086/3
Refer AD personnel with serologic evidence of HIV-1 infection for a medical evaluation of fitness for continued service.
2004 W. Taylor in H. J. Thie et al. iv. 37
[They] often arrived at follow-on flying tours with considerably fewer flying hours than did their AD contemporaries.
AD n. Medicine Alzheimer's disease.
1955 101 604
A.D. is a progressive dementia which usually occurs between the ages of 40 and 60 years.
1987 D. Collerton in S. M. Stahl et al. xv. 285
A substantial noradrenergic deficit exists in some patients with AD.
25 Feb. 9 f
AD leaves a specific type of brain damage different from what happens in schizophrenia.
A/D n. Electronics (also A-D) analogue-to-digital.
1962 14 414
1983 147 78
Up to four fast instruments..transferred data via a second A/D system to the central computer.
2002 Nov. 135/1
What if every A/D converter incorporated lockware that prevents unauthorized digital recording?
[graphic abbreviation of post-classical Latin anno domini ]
= The Oxford Dictionary for Writers and Editors (ed. 2, 2000) p. 4 notes: ‘precedes numerals, but follows numbers written as words’. The abbreviation is sometimes found after numerals.
1556 in tr. A. Mainardi (title page)
A. D. 1556.
1663 W. Blundell in T. E. Gibson
This course, as it is now used upon the marshes..was stooped out by me W.B., a.d. 1654.
1683 I. Mather viii. 101
A.D. 1558. A Comet was seen in the Evening under Coma Berenices, of a pale colour, continuing about 30 dayes.
1764 J. Grainger i. 13
The declension of the needle was discovered, A.D. 1492, by Columbus.
1819 J. Playfair 1 78
Kelso... Here an abbey for Tironensian monks was founded, and richly endowed by David I, A.D. 1128.
1875 E. H. Bunbury in II. 712/2
The whole country..continued subject to the Byzantine empire, until it was overrun by the Seljukian Turks in 1074 a.d.
1906 T. Capek 395
There is no mention in Strabo of the Germanic and Pannonic wars of Tiberius of the years 4–11 a.d.
1963 G. H. Williams in S. C. Neill & H. R. Weber i. 30
In a letter to the church in Corinth written about AD 95, Clement..makes brief reference to the participants in the liturgy.
1 July a1/3
Preliminary research dates the settlement from about A.D. 900 to 1100.
AD n. autograph document.
1889 L. C. Draper
An A. D.—autograph document, not signed, is sometimes called into requisition to eke out a collection.
1912 F. K. Walter 1
A.D., Autograph document.
1962 D. D. Jackson 161
AD, in Clark's hand.
2009 D. Carpenter 108
AD... In the hand of SRB.
AD n. Military armoured division.
1949 R. E. Dupuy v. 71
One counterattack [CCB 9th AD] has started, but other [CCB 7th AD] not started yet.
2002 H. Coyle
After a rapid and all but unopposed advance, the 4th AD came to a halt just west of Twin City.
1950 Jan. 128/1
He was the ‘A.D.’, or athletic director, at Roosevelt High School in Chicago.
2006 M. Conrad iii. 34
The AD controls the athletic department budget.
AD n. chiefly Film assistant director, a person responsible for coordinating the production schedule of a film, and for oversight of the set, cast, and crew.
1957 18 June 7/3
Another person worthy of a testimonial repast—or at least a snack—is the so-called A.D., or assistant director.
1986 13 Dec. b1/4
They just put the camera up... The AD [assistant director] was a friend of mine.
2008 2 June (Extra section) 2/6
‘First positions, thank you very much,’ calls the first AD.
ADC n. aide-de-camp (hence ADC-ship).
1777 A. Hamilton Let. 10 Nov. in G. Washington
Revolutionary War Ser. XII. 193
[Signed] A. Hamilton A.D.C.
1801 S. Owenson 155
Captain E— celebrated the virtues of Capt. S—ll, (A. D. C. to his R. H. Prince William of Gloucester)..in a monody that did equal honor to his head and heart.
1837 E. Eden Let. 28 Oct. in
I. i. 9
The A.D.C.'s are very apt to assemble over our cabins at night.
1896 4 Jan. 5/2
Permitted to retain his A.D.C.-ship after promotion from field-rank.
1919 G. Frankau
If you do change your mind about that ACD-ship, drop me a line.
1945 Ld. Alanbrooke Diary 13 Feb. in
Rollie Charrington came to dinner and like the brick he is offered to take Barney's place as ADC.
2005 G. Sheffield & J. Bourne in D. Haig 508
He served as ADC to Lord Roberts in India and was Kitchener's DAAG in the Sudan.
ADC n. Electronics analogue-to-digital converter; cf.
1961 272 539/1
The ADC-1B Analog-to-Digital Converter.
1985 C. H. Vanderwolf & L.-W. S. Leung in A. A. Boulton & G. B. Baker ix. 316
An analog-to-digital converter (ADC) converts a continuous signal to a series of discrete, digital values.
2008 Feb. 59/2
The opposite of the ADC, the digital-to-analog converter turns a digital value into an analog waveform.
ADD n. Psychiatry attention (also attentional) deficit disorder.
1979 Jan. 66/1
The next edition of the American Psychiatric Association's official Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM III) will have relabeled ‘hyperactivity’ and MBD syndrome as attentional deficit disorder (ADD).
1994 Sept. 29/1
ADD..is only just being recognised in Britain as a genuine medical syndrome and a potential nightmare of late-twentieth century living.
2006 Feb. 24/3
My attention span is horrible, man. I've got ADD.
ADF n. automatic direction finder.
1939 June 24/2
The ADF-6—Automatic Direction Finder: Primarily a powerful radio receiver offering direction finding... Learadio offers the ADF-6 as the latest contribution to the art of safe flying.
Radio stations erected specifically for use with the ADF are known as NDB (non-directional beacons or radiophares).
2000 60 247/1
The plane was equipped with only one automatic direction finder (ADF).
ADGB n. now historical Air Defence of Great Britain.
1926 6 May 272/2
The Fighting and Wessex Bombing Areas are under the A.O.C.-in-C., A.D.G.B.
1944 1 Mar. 4/5
Sir Archibald Sinclair disclosed for the first time that the organization responsible for the air defence of this country is now known as A.D.G.B. (Air Defence of Great Britain).
2002 J. Ferris in S. Cox & P. Gray i. ii. 37
Experience at ADGB and as the RAF's Director of Research had taught him much about research and development.
ADH n. Medicine antidiuretic hormone.
1945 25 573
The antidiuretic substance is a hormone (ADH) formed in the pars nervosa of the pituitary gland.
1983 J. Weatherall et al. II. xviii. 20/2
Reliable assays for ADH in plasma or urine are now available.
9 June d1
The ability to concentrate urine is controlled by the kidney as signaled from the brain via a hormone called ADH, or antidiuretic hormone.
Psychiatry attention deficit (also deficient) hyperactivity disorder.
1987 9 228
If AD-HD is viewed as a dimensional disorder lying on a continuum with normal child behavior..then another approach to assessment is required.
1994 24 July iv. 1/4
Today, Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn surely would have been diagnosed with both conduct disorder and ADHD.
2006 July 19/1
He was also prescribed Ritalin for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
ADL n. originally and chiefly U.S. = .
1952 E. B. Lawton i. 5/2
A given A.D.L. for a given group of patients..is the sum total not only of all the motions of the specific activity but also of everything that was learned on the preceding level.
2001 F. Popcorn & A. Hanft 2
You don't know how important ADLs are until you aren't capable of doing them anymore.
ADP n. Biochemistry adenosine diphosphate.
1942 143 300
Adenosine diphosphate (ADP) was incubated with myokinase or deaminase or both.
1967 90 577
The hydrolysis of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) to adenosine diphosphate (ADP) and inorganic phosphate.
2008 E. Regis v. 86
The original ATP molecule is converted to adenosine diphosphate, ADP, a dangling phosphate (P), and energy.
ADP n. automatic (also automated) data processing.
1955 Oct. 248
Moore's ADP training... Classes in automated data processing.
21 Nov. 2
Provident president William Maytum said his bank was one of the first to use ADP services.
2003 N. Rush xxxvi. 677
You don't know anything about ADP, do you? You need to. That's where the world is going, ADP, ASAP.
ADR n. chiefly North American alternative dispute resolution.
1982 23 Aug. 56/1
A new Washington-based company..is beginning to provide dispute-management services—including cost-benefit analyses, ADR, and training.
2004 June (Advertising Suppl.) s32
DM&S always fights for its clients' rights, both in the courtroom, and when appropriate, using mediation and ADR.
ADR n. U.S. Stock Market American depository receipt.
1956 5 Aug. iii. 7/3
Other banks issuing ADRs are expected to look into the possibility of making similar arrangements with some companies whose shares are or may be represented by depository receipts.
2003 D. L. Scott
Holders of sponsored ADRs have all the rights of common stockholders.
ADS n. autograph document signed.
1861 1 July Tenison Mss. 50
Colbert, A.L.S. to Cavalier Bernino, 1665—Perrault (the architect of the Louvre), A.D.S. with portrait.
1912 F. K. Walter 1
A.D.S., Autograph document signed.
1979 J. Y. Simon VIII. 382
McPherson enclosed a statement of Aug. 10 in which Col. Josiah W. Bissell described the organization of the Engineer Regt. of the West. ADS, ibid.
2000 A. F. Wertheim & B. Bair II. 29
Descriptive Symbols. AD. Autograph Document. ADS. Autograph Document Signed.
ADSL n. Computing and Telecomm. asymmetric (also asynchronous) digital subscriber line (or loop), a technology for the transmission of digital data over standard copper telephone lines which allows the high-speed transmission of signals from the telephone network to an individual subscriber, but a slower rate of transmission from the subscriber to the network; cf. .
1991 10 June 28/2
The ADSL concept grew out of Bellcore's developmental work for high-rate digital subscriber line.
2000 No. 15. 65/2
Because ADSL uses existing copper cables, the high frequency signals sent down them get degraded as they get further away from their point of origin.
2005 3 Mar. (Life section) 21/2
The real speeds of 400kbps to 800kbps are comfortably within the range delivered on phone lines by ADSL.
ADT n. Canadian Atlantic Daylight Time.
1949 S. K. Farrington i. 46
Fishing will start at 7:00 AM ADT daily on a signal from the judge's boat.
1970 23 Apr. 13/1
Quebec will be all EDT, while the Maritime provinces, in the Atlantic time zone, will be all ADT.
1994 Mar. 25/3
Mideclipse will occur at these times across Canada:..1:25 p.m. EDT, 2:50 p.m. ADT.
AE n. Photography auto-exposure; automatic exposure.
[1976 Oct. 46/1
The Canon AE-1 is a dandy little handful... It has..a blinking ‘M’ in the viewfinder when the camera is in manual mode instead of automatic-exposure mode.]
1977 June 51
Perfectly exposed cine pictures with Automatic Exposure Control (AE).
1991 Mar. 13
The centre weighted multi-zone metering in conjunction with the Program AE exposure mode effectively makes this a very accurate ‘point and shoot’ camera.
2007 July 73/2
The camera detects faces, and adjusts both focus (AF) and exposure (AE) to make the most of them.
AEC n. U.S. Atomic Energy Commission, an organization set up in 1946 by the U.S. government to regulate and promote use of atomic energy.
1946 29 Oct. 4/3
Mr. Truman said the Army would continue to operate its present atomic projects during the period of transition to the new AEC.
2003 34 517/2
The AEC justified the tests as necessary for national security.
A.E.F. n. American Expeditionary Forces (cf. ).
Maj. Edward H. Bowle, headquarters A.E.F. Officers and enlisted men have been ordered abroad for meteorological work in connection with America expeditionary force.
1998 31 May 52/3
Right after the armistice, some political operatives had quietly canvassed among the doughboys of the A.E.F.
AER n. annual equivalent rate (of interest).
1998 16 Sept. (Wednesday Review section)13
As the AER will be published every time a contractual rate of interest appears..it will be easier for savers to compare the returns that they can expect when they leave the interest they earn in their account.
2001 27 Jan. (Money section) 11/3
I now pay no interest on my credit card, and £500 in my current account earns a very nice 5% AER/gross.
aet n. Sport (originally and chiefly Association Football) after extra time.
1971 13 Apr. 7/2
Hertfordshire Senior Cup: Final: St Albans 1, Bishop's Stortford 1 (a.e.t.).
1979 12 Dec. 24
Swindon 4, Arsenal 3 (aet).
Cahill Cup... Gortnahoe 1-13 Upperchurch 0-13 (aet).
AEU n. British (now historical) Amalgamated Engineering Union.
1921 4 Feb. 7/4
It was announced that the A.E.U. had submitted proposals which would be laid before the N.U.R. delegates at their resumed conference in the morning.
a1974 R. Crossman
I spent the morning with the old A.E.U. members who have A.E.U. pensions.
2006 Jan. 60/3
At Amicus, Simpson inherited a post-merger environment in which he was confronted by a legacy of an entire shelf-load of alphabetti spaghetti—AEU and EETPU, which became the AEEU [etc.].
AF n. air force; cf. , , etc.
1919 27 Dec. 7/2
British AF Independence. The constitution of the British air force emphasizes its integrity and independence as a separate fighting unit of the Crown.
[He] grew up on a farm in Iowa, attended Iowa State College and joined the AF in March 1959.
1915 3 411
The following abbreviations are used:..a.f.—audio frequency.
1944 Aug. 206
The R.F. carrier wave..must be varied in exact accordance with the A.F. impulses that represent speech and music.
B. 352 651
Bring the RF signal down to an intermediate frequency (IF) or audio frequency (AF).
AF n. Photography autofocus; automatic focusing (also focus).
Fig. 2 is a diagram showing the automatic focusing control circuit (hereinafter referred to as AF circuit).
1994 Oct. 71/1
If you have an autofocus (AF) camera, switch it to manual focusing to save battery drain from the AF motors.
2005 D. Harman ii. 58/1
If your camera allows control over which auto focus (AF) points you can use, select the central AF point and use it to focus.
1950 Dec. 262/2
This correspondent flew as an observer in a recent high-altitude combat demonstration over Andrews AFB.
2004 J. G. Dunne i. iii. 127
If the toxins in the infection were militant enough, it could put him on a plane back to Travis AFB.
The Air Force Cross. 1918—A.F.C.—Instituted..for acts of courage or devotion to duty when flying, although not in active operations against the enemy.
1995 E. Wilson iii. 26
In February 1970 the AFC was awarded for the first time to a naval officer.
AFC n. U.S. American Football Conference; cf. .
1970 15 Mar. 6/2
Following Cleveland in the AFC are: Kansas City, Pittsburgh..and San Diego.
1995 26 Aug. 20/2
Kansas City Chiefs... Over the past two seasons, RB Marcus Allen has scored more touchdowns than anyone else in the AFC.
12 Nov. iii. 2/4
He led all AFC defenders with 25 passes defended last season.
AFC n. British Association Football club.
1879 22 Oct. 26/1
For the R.U.F.C. the officers elected are—1st captain, Burnett; 2nd ditto, Payne; secretary Chapman (who is also secretary to the A.F.C.).
2000 M. Herman 98
The enormous Stadium of Light. Home of Sunderland AFC.
AFC n. Electronics automatic frequency control.
1934 Dec. 375/3
Mr. Travis stated that automatic frequency control, or AFC, was only a refinement, perhaps, for superheterodynes used in the broadcast band.
1973 37 416
EKG's may be received by an FM receiver with good automatic frequency control (afc).
2008 T. Petruzzellis xii. 94
The AFC or automatic frequency control of the local oscillator is accomplished using the Varicap diode at D10.
AFI n. American Film Institute.
1967 6 June a19/2
Establishment of the long-promised American Film Institute was announced... A private, non-profit corporation, the AFI will have its headquarters in Washington.
1992 Jan. 13/1
Says Gary McVey, festival producer for the AFI, ‘American culture has opened up to international cuisine and music so much in the last 20 years, but, ironically, in film they've gone the opposite direction.’
2007 S. Baumann iii. 75
There has been controversy since the beginning surrounding the degree to which the AFI should focus on scholarly research and publication.
AFIS n. ,
U.S. = .
1983 H. Togoh et al. 84/2
The Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS) has been developed to solve these problems. It has two main functions: automatic registration and filing; and, automatic matching of latent fingerprints.
1984 19 Mar. 25/1
The $2.6 million Automated Fingerprint Identification System (Afis)..has already resulted in an arrest for a previously unsolved six-year-old murder case.
2003 S. Paretsky
They're running your John Doe's prints through AFIS.
AFK adv. colloquial (originally and chiefly in electronic communications) away from (the) keyboard.
[1989 8 May 10
AFK, Away From Keys.]
1990 Re: Smilies collection in rec.humour
AFK = Away From Keyboard.
1990 LPMUD Sugg. Rent-a-Stuff Recap in alt.mud
As I have been AFK for about a week, I couldn't read alt.mud, would someone please mail me any postings concerning my suggestion?
1990 15 Oct. c3/5
AFK, Away From Keyboard.
2008 T. Boellstorff iv. 108
Often Second Life residents went afk for domestic reasons: to fix dinner for their families, dust the furniture, or spend time with an actual-world spouse.
AFL n. American Federation of Labor.
[1889 15 Dec. 4/6
We deem it necessary to briefly state the attitude of the A. F. of L. toward that order [sc. the Knights of Labor].]
1890 Oct. 786/1
From a brief acquaintance with President Gompers we believe the A.F.L. has an able and energetic leader.
1935 28 May 4/8
The effect on wages in private industry would be nil, a circumstance which..presumably does not mitigate against the political correctness of the AFL's position.
2003 C. C. Northrup & E. C. P. Turney 14
The AFL merged with the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) in 1955 to form the present-day AFL-CIO.
AFL n. Australian Football League, the major professional league for Australian Rules football.
1989 27 Aug. 153
It [sc. the Victoria Football League] already has announced that it will change its name to the AFL next year.
2005 7 Mar. 50/2
Pickett was given a six-match ban,..a penalty that was upheld by the AFL's appeals board last week.
1919 11 Dec. 15/7
Sergeant W. H. Shiers, A.F.M., is also an Adelaide man.
2001 P. Duckers 49
The AFM was rendered obsolete in 1993 when the Air Force Cross was made available to all ranks.
AFS n. now historical Auxiliary Fire Service.
1938 16 June 13/4
The training uniform for auxiliary firemen consists of blue dungaree overalls, rubber boots, black webbing belt..and an A.F.S. cap.
2003 N. Moss x. 307
Four-fifths of the firemen were members of the AFS, the Auxilliary Fire Service, who joined up for the war, and they had had little experience of firefighting.
1982 8 Jan. d2/6
The car, called AFV, for alternative-fuel vehicle, will be on display at the Detroit Auto Show later this month and, if built, would be ‘slightly more expensive’ to buy than conventional gasoline-powered cars.
16 June a9
Auto manufacturers also produce a whole array of other AFVs that operate on natural gas, propane and electricity.
AFV n. armoured fighting vehicle.
1927 15 July 11/5
The expression ‘armoured fighting vehicles’ (A.F.V.) has been added to the Army vocabulary. Something of the sort was needed, in order to distinguish vehicles that are self-contained for actual fighting from those which are used to move the other arms of the Service about.
(City of Oxford Civil Defence)
No. 53 18 June 3
Vehicles. Very dark dull grey with dark brown disruptive design. A.F.V.'s have black cross outlined in white.
1969 xiii. 1
The first tracked AFV's to go into military service in Canada since 1918.
2001 G. McKay & G. Nicholas i. 5
To be part of the AFV crew requires a certain sense of being ‘at one’ with the machine.
1913 W. T. Rogers 7/1
1998 I. M. Brown ii. 48
Had Sir John French not had three consummate professionals as his QMG, AG, and IGC, he might have had a terrible problem on his hands.
1814 J. Campbell III. 501
Garrow, A. G., for the defendant, contended that these facts afforded sufficient evidence.
1841 in F. A. Carrington & J. Payne IX. 139
Campbell, A.G., opened the case for the Crown, and in his opening said:—This indictment against John Frost consists of four counts.
1889 A. J. Balfour 11 Apr. (Br. Libr. Add. MSS 49827 f. 845)
My dear A.G.
1992 J. Batten ii. 63
Blacklock articled at the Ontario attorney general's office..and he was offered a job... So were four other students. The AG was seriously short of bodies.
2006 U. Smartt ii. 63
The AG sought injunctions against the Guardian, the Observer and the Sunday Times newspapers.
AGC n. Electronics automatic gain control.
AGC is an automatic gain control unit.
1978 Nov. 107/2
JVC's models have an AGC switch for overly bright or dim scenes; it provides the equivalent of one f-stop compensation.
2005 J. D. Herrington x. 364
AGC can be very useful for untrained recordists, especially nonprofessionals making audio diaries.
AGM n. annual general meeting.
1886 J. F. Wilkinson ix. 126
The Central Body is known by different titles... In the Manchester Unity the governing body is known as the Annual Movable Committee (A.M.C.); in the Foresters as the High Court (H.C.); in the Rechabites the High Movable Conference (H.M.C.); in the Free Gardeners as the Annual General Meeting (A.G.M.).
1952 2 Aug. 99/2
It is surely not the intention to enable even private companies to hold their A.G.M.'s on paper with the members in various different places.
2006 Apr. 3/1
We will meet together at Good Shepherd Church at 5pm for a Bring and Share tea and the AGM followed by our Monthly Service.
AGN n. Astronomy active galactic nucleus (or nuclei).
1983 3 111
Somewhat more than 50% of the..viewing time will be devoted to galactic studies..and the remainder to extragalactic studies (AGN, extragalactic supernovae).
2003 25 Oct. 35/2
Because the density of gas on the edge of an AGN accretion disc is millions of times higher than in a typical interstellar cloud, once formation has begun the star matures rapidly.
AGR n. advanced gas-cooled reactor.
1958 No. 21 11/1
We are already carrying out experiments with a zero energy reactor, NERO, to study the nuclear properties of the A.G.R. reactor.
1983 14 July 6/1
The American reactor will produce five times as much intermediate waste as the AGR.
1996 Autumn (Suppl.) 2/3
When the expected operational costs and liabilities are taken into account, the company's seven Advanced Gas Cooled Reactors (AGRs) are actually worthless.
[graphic abbreviation of post-classical Latin anno Hegirae (1556 or earlier) < classical Latin annō , ablative of annus year (see ) + post-classical Latin Hegirae , genitive of Hegira ]
in the year of the Hegira (see ).
1621 P. Heylyn 321
1788 E. Gibbon V. lii. 418
The foundations of Bagdad were laid a.h. 145, a.d. 762.
1861 W. Muir III. xiii. 151
Mahomet marries Haphsa Shában, A.H. III. November A.D. 624.
1940 F. Stark iv. 25
It [sc. the wooden minbar] belonged to the year a.h. 693 (1293 a.d.).
These dates, in the Muslim calendar (AH), start with the Hegira, the prophet Muhammad's flight from Mecca to Medina in A.D. 622.
AHA n. Chemistry alpha-hydroxy acid.
Percent of rosin based on the wt. of the AHA, estolides, and rosin, percent by weight.
5 Jan. 24
AHAs are natural—found in sour milk, old wine, fruit and sugar cane—and have none of Retin-A's negative side effects.
2008 May 158/1
Used once a week with an exfoliator, an AHA can help you flatten out the topography of wrinkled areas.
AI n. Air Interception; (also) airborne interception.
1945 17 683
With the Battle of Britain by night must be associated the use of A.I. or Air Interception.
1992 A. Hodgkin
ii. xii. 147
When the fighter was suitably placed the observer would be given the order ‘Flash Weapon’ which would tell him to switch on the AI and complete the interception.
AI n. artificial insemination.
1945 13 Jan. 40/1
We ourselves have used, and in certain respects developed, the technique of artificial insemination (A.I.) during the past five years.
1972 7 Dec. 30/2
The major advantage of AI is that a good bull can be used to sire thousands of daughters.
29 July a 1
Last year..the club registered 2,828 AI-produced litters [of puppies].
AI n. artificial intelligence.
1963 M. L. Minsky 2
A.I. Memo 61.
1991 Mar. 51/1
Truly reactive creatures far more intelligent than any AI systems that have come before.
What about video game characters? They're governed by AI.
AID n. now historical Aeronautical Inspection Directorate (also Department).
1916 28 July 5/6
Whatever you find belongs to me. It was given to me by the late Colonel Fulton (chief of the Aeronautical Inspection Department) and Mr. Cockburn, one of the present A.I.D. inspectors, can vouch for it.
1998 P. Summerfield vi. 210
She moved from riveting in an aircraft factory to training and working as a member of the AID, and had plans to join the ATA.
AID n. , U.S. Agency for International Development, established in 1961 to give economic aid to underdeveloped countries.
1961 J. F. Kennedy in 27 May 2/5
Responsibility..will be assigned to a single agency—the Agency for International Development... The new agency—A.I.D.—will be headed by an administrator of Under Secretary rank.
2003 N. Rush xiv. 157
He could imagine the AID people saying that this was not what they needed to have shoved down their throats at a memorial service.
AID n. artificial insemination by donor (or with donated semen).
1945 13 Jan. 40/2
Male sterility and Other Indications for Artificial Insemination with Donated Semen (A.I.D.).
1979 23 Mar. 1219/2
Although these cases would be rare,..AID prevents any real safeguard against inadvertent inbreeding.
20 May (G2 section) 8
I went on a waiting list to have AID (artificial insemination by donor).
AIF n. now historical Australian Imperial Force.
1915 6 Mar. 11/2
J. P. Abbot, B.A., Clerical Division, A.I.F.
1940 16 Feb. 121
The Second A.I.F.—Australian Imperial Force—consisting of men who have volunteered for service either at home or abroad.
2000 105 1722/2
There was a continuing problem with the discipline of the Australian Imperial Force (AIF).
AIH n. artificial insemination by husband.
1945 13 Jan. 43/1
In a recent series of 30 successive cases A.I.H. was carried out because of low invasive power of the semen.
1968 7 Mar. 552/2
The use of homologous artificial insemination (AIH).
AIH accounts for a small proportion of artificial insemination cases.
British Stock Market Alternative Investment Market.
1994 7 Sept. 15/4
The idea behind AIM is to make entry as easy and cheap as possible while preserving some basic safeguards for investors.
1995 2 May 22/1
Aim, the new small companies market.
2007 29 Nov. (Extra section) 10/5
We absolutely are a commercial, for profit organisation and we wouldn't be able to go into the AIM if we weren't.
AIM n. , U.S. American Indian Movement.
1971 16 Aug. 12/2
The occupation began..when 25 Indians, most of them members of the American Indian Movement (AIM) broke a window.
Eyre was a beneficiary of the movement: ‘I got a lot of my education through programs that came out of AIM activism,’ he said.
[ < the initial letters of ]
U.S. slang (originally Theatre) (now rare) =
1911 16 Sept. 8/2
The organization of vaudeville agents..would vote to discard the appellation of ‘agent’..and become known as ‘theatrical brokers’... Many agents familiarly known as the ‘A. K.'s’ (alter kokers)..would be classed by themselves.
1920 27 Aug. 7/1
Thorek cuts out goat gland optimism. Theatrical surgeon says, goat and monkey N.G. for A.K.
1931 I. Gershwin Entrance of Supreme Court Judges in
They're..the A.K.s who give the O.K.s!
1943 A. Halper vi. 73
Nah, I'm an A.K., I'm thirty-five.
1966 I. Faust 140
It's all the A.K.s lookin' for a handout like my brother Milton.
[ < Russian AK, initialism < avtomat Kalašnikova Kalashnikov's automatic (see )]
an automatic kalashnikov rifle; esp. (more fully AK-47) a model of this rifle, first manufactured in 1947.
1963 T. Nelson I. 22
The end result was that the Avtomat Kalashnikov (AK), which is, in the opinion of many students of contemporary small arms design, the finest weapon in its class in the world.
1970 2 85
All of the 50 or so Cambodian soldiers present are carrying Chinese-made, Soviet designed AK-47 rifles.
1978 T. O'Brien xiv. 89
Stink said it didn't sound like an AK, anyway. ‘No crack,’ he said.
1996 23 May 1/6
How do you expect a policeman, who is confronted by a criminal brandishing an AK47 rifle, to behave?
AKC n. American Kennel Club.
1885 6 28
No awards will be recognized except those made by members of the A. K. C.
1939 23 July x. 3/4
Twenty-six of the country's best-known ring critics will award an array of trophies... A feature will be the A. K. C. obedience trial classes.
2004 Oct. 24/2
How to integrate these non-registered, non-pedigreed dogs into the AKC gene pool?
AL n. Baseball American League; cf. .
1908 9 Feb. ii. 1/4
Jones is quite confident that the White Sox will win the A.L. pennant this year.
1991 M. Pappas in J. Eisenberg vii. 63
The AL hadn't caught up with the NL as far as blacks were concerned, and they finally made an effort in the early '60s to start signing more black players.
30 June d2
On the national front, it's still silly that the All-Star Game and not interleague play determines World Series home-field advantage. The AL usually gets the nod either way.
1868 Nov. 256/2
A. L. (third person) 1. p. 4to.
1967 J. Y. Simon I. p. xxxiii
AL Autograph Letter.
2006 R. A. Hill X. 16
AL, draft copy.
(also A.L.A., a.l.a., ala)
British (in personal advertisements) all letters answered.
1974 28 Mar. 18/1
Gay male, 26, wishes to make new friends... Please write. Photo appreciated. ALA.
1987 21 Oct. 119/1
Colin ‘lookalike’ is looking for his Barry. Is it you?.. Photo/phone. a.l.a.
2008 A. Lister 7
First Timers Seek Similar—she bi-curious and eager to find out more. ALA.
ALP n. Australian Labour Party.
1922 Mar. 409
The federal conference of the A.L.P., held at Perth in June, 1918.
1973 31 Aug. 1434/1
Will the ALP grow a new set of wings?
2003 20 Oct. 3/1
The Victorian ALP faces months of infighting over renewed allegations of branch stacking in a string of federal seats.
ALS n. Associate of the Linnean Society.
1793 1 75
Mr. Thomas Hoy, of Gordon Castle. A. L. S.
1891 17 Jan. 76/3
Mycologist, Dr. M. C. Cooke, M.A., A.L.S.
The Linnean Society of London... Associate (ALS): Restricted to persons aged 18–29.
(also ALs, Als)
autograph letter signed.
1851 29 July
Autograph Letters 1, Letters autograph and signed are thus marked ‘A.L.s.’
Laid in is a 2 pp. A.L.S. regarding the forwarding of Stevenson's writings.
1981 V. Klinkenborg et al. 264/1
Aird, Thomas, 1802–1876. Als (2) 1853, 1858 to Mr Ebsworth.
2006 J. Liberkowski 10
Autograph Note Signed—basically the same as an ALS but shorter.
ALU n. Computing arithmetic and logic(al) unit.
1956 5 220/2
Switching circuits which permit only the addressed character to be transmitted from the memory buffer register to the ALU.
1984 Jan. 135/1
A basic operation of the ALU will be to accept two 16-bit inputs and to produce a 32-bit product.
2001 P. J. Bentley ii. 38
The ALU follows the rules of addition embedded in its circuitry and calculates the correct answer.
1918 6 Sept. 3/2
It is notified in Army Orders that officers..who have been awarded the Albert Medal are now entitled to add the distinctive letters ‘A.M.’ after their names.
2005 C. McCreery p. xviii.
British Bravery Decorations. AM Albert Medal. GM George Medal [etc.].
AM n. Radio amplitude modulation; cf. .
1939 Oct. 86/3
In a clumsy attempt to blank out static in its service area an AM station must increase the strength of its signal to thirty or forty times greater than the strength of the noise.
1962 E. Snow
The hi-fi set and typewriter have already been stolen and only a worthless AM set remains.
2006 17 Nov. 15/2
The transfer of the Daily Service at 9.45 a.m. from AM/FM to Long Wave disenfranchised many of us.
[graphic abbreviation of post-classical Latin anno mundi (11th cent.)]
in the year of the world (chiefly preceding a date).
1596 T. Bell iii. i. 94
1651 C. Hoole i. 8
A.M. Anno mundi, In the year of the World.
1784 P. Oliver 2
The second son of Adam, who was slain by his brother Cain; supposed to be slain, A.M. 130.
1865 W. A. Baker x. 144
Archbishop Usher..places the nativity in the year A.M. 4000 and the nativity in the year A.M. 4004.
1987 J. T. Fraser ii. 93
Putting it all together, today fills in the year 5747 a.m. (Anno Mundi, as calculated in the Jewish and traditional Christian chronology).
[graphic abbreviation of post-classical Latin artium magister (1440 in a British source)]
now chiefly U.S. Master of Arts (cf. ).
1664 T. Lawrence (title page)
Sent in a Letter to Thomas Brown, M.D. By Tho. Lawrence, A.M.
1684 T. Creech tr. Theocritus sig. A2
To His Honoured Friend Arthur Charlet A.M. Fellow of Trinity College in Oxon.
1726 W. Law (title page)
The absolute unlawfulness of the stage-entertainment fully demonstrated. By William Law, A.M.
1837 (title page)
Edited by Samuel F. B. Morse, A.M. Professor, &c. &c., in the University of the City of New-York.
1915 C. E. Hughes in 185
The repute of the University was being endangered by the low standard of scholarship required for the degrees of A.M. and A.B.
1995 B. Edmonston & C. Schultze 459
She has an A.M. degree in Sociology from the University of Chicago.
AM n. British Assembly Member; (the official abbreviation in English for) a member of the Welsh Assembly; cf. .
[She]..has been elected to the New National Assembly for Wales as the Labour AM (Assembly Member) for Cardiff North.
29 Apr. 1
The Pontypridd AM was at an awards presentation at Tonyrefail Primary School.
AM n. Member of the Order of Australia.
A.M... Member of the Order of Australia.
2008 M. D. Prentis 79
He was awarded the AM in 1993.
AMA n. American Medical Association.
1849 2 122
Alfred Stille, Henry J. Bowditch, Sec's of A.M.A.
1878 35 44
We propose..to present this plan to the next meeting of the A.M.A.
1911 Sept. 284/1
Now and then the ducks left their pond and waddled pompously across the lawn, as if to let the A.M.A. know that the ‘quacks’ had a right to membership, too.
1959 13 June 833/3
One cannot help wondering whether obstruction by the AMA has played any part in preventing Eckstein's book from being published earlier.
2004 3 Dec. 1649
The AMA had urged the institutional review boards (IRBs) that review trial protocols to require such registration before approval of a drug.
AMD n. Medicine age-related (also adult) macular degeneration.
1984 102 1640/1
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is one of the four most common causes of severe visual loss in this country.
2006 J. C. Folk & M. E. Wilkinson i. 1
The risk of AMD sky-rockets with advancing age.
[graphic abbreviation of post-classical Latin ad maiorem Dei gloriam (6th cent.)]
to the greater glory of God (esp. as a motto of the Jesuits).
1814 May 178/2
To the Editor of the Orthodox Journal. A. M. D. G.
1837 S. F. B. Morse 231
Such is the spirit of those histories; and the Jesuits entitle their works A.M.D.G., viz.—‘Ad majorem Dei gloriam’,—(to the greatest glory of God).
1877 E. S. Dallas 279
Another liqueur, Bénédictine..is consecrated with the letters A.M.D.G. (Ad majorem Dei gloriam).
1965 N. Freeling ii. xiii. 148
We had to write at the top of the page..the Jesuit motto A.M.D.G.
1999 W. W. Meissner xviii. 312
The motto..has become synonymous with..Jesuits the world over. Hardly a logo or banner..representing the Society does not carry the familiar AMDG.
AMG n. Allied Military Government (cf. ).
1943 3 86/2
AMG. Not long after AMGOT (Allied Military Government of Occupied Territories) first appeared in print it was denounced as an unprintable Turkish word. Immediately the War Department shortened the form to AMG (Allied Military Governments).
2004 H. Mitgang vi. 82
Even before the AMG landed in Sicily, conflicts arose about how to run the defeated Axis nation.
AMP n. Biochemistry adenosine monophosphate (adenylic acid).
1943 148 136
2 ADP ⇌ ATP + AMP.
1968 J. H. Burn
Cyclic AMP is broken down by phosphodiesterase to the inactive 5-AMP.
2005 C. de Duve xii. 156
The group has recently described the phosphorylation of AMP to ADP and ATP in a similar system.
AMPA n. Biochemistry alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid, an excitatory amino acid which acts as an agonist at a particular class of glutamate receptor; frequently attributive, designating receptors of this class.
1972 261 106
Phosphonoacetic acid was degraded by the Schmidt reaction to CO2 and AMPA.
1998 Apr. 22/2
Without GluR2 sub-units, AMPA receptors become calcium permeable and so key players in excitotoxic cell death.
(Washington Final ed.)
24 Feb. 10/3
Because glutamate is so central to the brain's activity, directly blocking or triggering the NMDA and AMPA receptors can be very dangerous.
AMRAAM n. ,
U.S. Military advanced medium range air-to-air missile.
1979 5 Feb. 10
The Amraam will succeed the Raytheon Sparrow Aim 7 missile as the U.S. medium-range air-combat missile.
2009 Mar. 67/1
A small country can buy a MiG-21 on the world weapons market..and outfit it with ‘launch and leave’ missiles comparable to the AMRAAM.
AMS n. Medicine acute mountain sickness.
1969 28 1085/1
As a working definition, we consider AMS to be a syndrome or symptom complex which occurs to some degree in all unacclimatized individuals who rapidly ascend to high terrestrial elevations.
2004 May 54/2
The secret to beating AMS (acute mountain sickness) is acclimatisation.
AMT n. U.S. alternative minimum tax.
1979 15 July c3/3
The new AMT exempts the first $20,000 of income, but levies a tax of 10 percent or $2,000 on his total income of $40,000.
2007 16 Feb. a12/1
He wouldn't necessarily object if Democrats passed a ‘revenue neutral’ bill cutting taxes paid under AMT and raising them elsewhere to offset the money that would be lost to the Treasury.
amu n. Physics atomic mass unit.
1954 24 Dec. 1078/2
Proposed symbols for units..Atomic mass unit..amu..1 amu=931 Mev.
1988 H. A. Klein xx. 207
The amu (physical) is 0.03 percent less than the amu (international).
2008 J. E. House xiii. 423
Naturally occurring boron consists of approximately 20% of 10B and 80% of 11B, leading to an average atomic mass of 10·8 amu.
1915 No. 788
Monroe (James). A. N. third person, 1p. 12mo, undated.
1963 J. F. Hopkins IV. 22
AN. MHi-Adams Papers. Addressed: ‘The Honble J. Q. Adams. Present’.
1990 J. J. Benson 469
Ms 716 is an autograph note (AN), JFK.
2006 S. K. Gragert & M. J. Johansson IV. 59
AN Autograph note.
ANC n. African National Congress.
1952 27 Nov. 12
The recommendations were adopted by the conference of the A.N.C. and S.A.I.C., and the course of action followed during the defiance campaign was mainly that prescribed in these recommendations.
1984 24 Mar. 16/1
For many years the ANC was a peaceful organisation dedicated to changing South Africa through non-violent means.
2009 12 Feb. 28/2
The ANC's spokesperson..told me that the government has built 2.8 million houses since 1994.
ANF n. Biochemistry atrial natriuretic factor.
1983 164 286
ANF is localized in the granules of the atrial cardiocytes.
2005 102 18039/1
The ANF promoter serves as a target of cardiac-specific and stress-dependent gene regulation.
ANP n. Biochemistry atrial natriuretic peptide.
1984 124 816
Rat atrial peptide, α-rat ANP.
21 Apr. c1
As the heart works harder, the body produces more ANP, which helps control the brain's response to stress and anxiety.
ANS n. autograph note signed.
A.N.S., Autograph note signed.
1912 F. K. Walter 1
A.N.S. Autograph note signed.
2001 P. Olleson 33
ANS, 1p. (Private collection of Cynthia Comyn).
ANS n. Physiology autonomic (or automatic) nervous system.
1962 T. G. Hiebert
i. i. 2
The Automatic Nervous System (ANS).
1978 31 Mar. 1413/3
Other neurons of the parasympathetic portion of the ANS.
2003 P. Ekman iv. 63
Different patterns of ANS activity for each of the emotions we have examined.
ANSI n. , American National Standards Institute.
1969 Oct. 162
It will be appearing from now on as the identifying mark on all American National Standards published by the Institute...ansi.
1981 19 Oct. 17/1
ANSI sets the standards for light bulbs and innumerable other items whose uniformity most of us take for granted.
2008 D. M. Etter & J. A. Ingber
A total of 128 characters can be represented in the ANSI code.
AO n. Officer of the Order of Australia.
A.O... Officer of the Order of Australia.
2008 M. D. Prentis 97
She was awarded an MBE and an AO and was Australian of the Year in 1971.
AOB n. any other business (at the end of the agenda for a meeting).
1946 25 May 205/2
Under A.O.B., Dr. Vickers moved a vote of thanks to Mr. E. M. Myers for his services as Hon. Secretary during the past ten years; this was seconded by Prof. H. L. Riley.
1963 W. H. Scott et al. iv. 169
The secretary..claimed that if ‘AOB’ was heard earlier, members would leave as soon as it was completed.
4 Sept. 4
The board agreed to withdraw AOB from its agenda as the chair's items covers any necessary issues board members need to include.
AOC n. (with reference to wine, or some foods) appellation d'origine contrôlée.
1957 L. W. Marrison v. 97
Cognac and armagnac are also covered by A.O.C.'s.
1984 4 Oct. 1/5
It is still too early to predict..what the quality of the AOC wines will be like.
2000 S. Fallon & M. Rothschild (Lonely Planet Guide) 54
Fourme d'Ambert (AOC) is a very mild cow's milk cheese from Rhône-Alpes.
AONB n. area of outstanding natural beauty (cf. ).
The Breckland area of Norfolk and Suffolk has also been considered..for designation as an A.O.N.B. but rejected as unsuitable.
2006 May 125/1
Paul's house is outside a conservation area, AONB and a national park.
Alliance of Small Island States, a coalition of small island and coastal countries founded in 1990 to lobby for restrictions on carbon dioxide emissions and other (industrial) activities thought to contribute to climate change and consequent rises in sea level.
1990 15 Nov. 188/1
AOSIS would ‘be extremely firm in the negotiations to come’, pushing for limits on carbon dioxide emissions from the industrialized countries.
1995 25 Mar. 4/6
Some countries would disappear altogether. Thirty-six of them have joined in an alliance, AOSIS, and demanded a 20 per cent cut by 2005 in 1990 levels of carbon dioxide emissions.
19 Aug. 9
An analysis by Aosis of emissions reduction pledges made thus far had revealed that these would achieve just 10 to 16 percent of the required cuts to meet the 2°C target.
[1893 L. L. Williams & F. E. Rogers 201
Enter in A. P. B.]
1929 S. E. Howard viii. 109
Similarly the account A P (Accounts Payable) has been introduced in the general ledger (A) for the many individual accounts with trade creditors.
1994 C. R. Malburg ii. 36
The A/P subledger pays each payable when due.
2007 M. S. Schaeffer vii. 107
The customer believes that the time starts when the invoice hits the AP department, whereas the vendor starts counting on the date on the invoice.
AP n. North American Education advanced placement, a programme of college-level coursework offered to high school students; frequently attributive.
1958 5 Apr. 215/2
The real advantage which an A.P. student gains by qualifying for one or more sophomore courses in his first year is the time for more advanced work in his chosen field or for courses in other fields which normally could not be fitted into his schedule.
2003 D. A. Cantu & W. J. Warren xvii. 283
In 2001, over 820,000 students took thirty-five AP exams in nineteen subject areas.
1879 4 Mar. 5/4
Now, the A.P. may be a very wicked institution, but a ‘Monopoly’ it is not.
1947 i. 14
The full A.P. service is provided to Press Association and a selection of items is distributed to subscribers in this country.
20 Aug. a8/2
Depending on the service and phone, you'll receive four to six short text messages a day culled from the AP..and a 20- to 25-second audio clip.
AP n. attachment parenting (see ).
1996 Re: New Mailing List about Attachm. Parenting in misc.kids
I no longer feel constrained to do anything recommended by AP advocates if it doesn't fit well with my instincts or my child.
The philosophy of AP encourages responsive contact between parent and child and encourages the practices of breastfeeding, co-sleeping and babywearing.
2016 www.mumsnet.com 19 Aug.
(forum post, accessed 12 June 2017)
Read the rules of any FB group you join and comply with them... If you're in an AP group you can't possibly be surprised that they don't support sleep training.
APB n. U.S. all-points bulletin (see ).
1953 29 Sept. 4/6
Get me a copy of that picture just going out on an APB.
1979 A. Hailey
iv. xvii. 382
A man..drove away in a Volkswagen van half an hour before the place was raided. The police have issued an APB for the van.
2005 23 June 45/4
There is no documented evidence of McDonald's death, and an APB put out on her in America has yielded nothing.
APC n. Military armoured personnel carrier.
1954 2 June 8/3
Immediately behind them waddled a line of APCs, carrying a full infantry platoon behind.
2006 D. J. Blasko 127
As an APC it can carry up to 20 troops; it can also mount or tow anti-tank guns or artillery.
APC n. Pharmacology a medicinal preparation containing aspirin, phenacetin (later replaced by paracetamol), and caffeine, used as an analgesic and antipyretic; a dose of this, typically in the form of a powder or tablet.
1930 27 Dec. 793/1
A.P.C. mixture.—Acetylsalicylic acid... Phenacetin... Caffeine.
1970 G. Jackson Let. 30 Mar. in
When I ask for medication the M.T.A. gives me an APC or two.
25 Oct. 37
The powerful APC (aspirin, phenacetin, caffeine) powders were so highly addictive that some women swallowed up to 50 a day.
API n. American Petroleum Institute (used esp. with reference to a scale, developed by the Institute, for expressing the relative density of oil).
1922 13 July 4
The American Petroleum Institute, the Bureau of Mines, and the Bureau of Standards have agreed that a scale based on the modulus 141.5 shall be used in the United States petroleum industry and shall be known as the A. P. I. scale.
1958 June 59/1
Crude oil prices are usually quoted on a scale..the heavier oil commanding..say 2 cents a barrel for each degree A.P.I. more than the lighter.
2001 Feb. 72/3
Make sure that the oil spec (its API or ACEA grade) is at least that recommended by your car's manufacturer.
API n. Computing application programming (or program) interface, a set of routines, protocols, and tools designed to allow the development of applications that can utilize or operate in conjunction with a given item of software, set of data, website, etc.See also .
1982 29 Nov. 87
It also includes the Application Program Interface (API), a host facility that allows user-written CICS applications to access Disoss document-related functions.
1996 Dec. 38/1
New features include API apprentice, which reduces complicated API calls down to filling out a dialog box.
12 Mar. (Technol. section) 6
Third parties using Twitter's API have developed a huge range of services and applications.
[initialism < associative programming language, but now often explained as initialism < A Programming Language, the title of a 1962 book by K. E. Iverson (1920–2004), who devised the mathematical notation which was developed into the programming language]
Computing a high-level programming language, typically used for mathematical computations.
1966 29 677/2
APL was conceived at the General Motors Research Laboratories to satisfy the need for convenient data handling techniques in a high-level language. Standing for associative programming language, it is designed to be embedded in PL/I as an aid to the user dealing with data structures in which associations are expressed.
1984 8 Jan. xii. 7/3
He taught himself how to program by sitting at a terminal with a book on APL.
2003 G. Perry
APL (which stands for A Programming Language) is a highly mathematical programming language developed by IBM.
APP n. Biochemistry amyloid precursor protein.
1988 6 387
The precursor of the beta-amyloid peptide (APP)..participates in the formation of neuritic plaques in human brains affected by Alzheimer's disease.
2007 A. de Grey & M. Rae viii. 138
Some people produce unusually large amounts of beta-amyloid because they have inherited mutations that..cause their bodies to produce too much of APP itself.
APR n. annual(ized) percentage rate (of interest on money lent on credit).
1972 Mar. 79/2
APR is a big help because it gives borrowers a uniform price base to work with while shopping.
2003 July 37/5
Most companies charge you extra for paying by instalments—we show you the annual percentage rate (APR) that they charge.
APS n. Photography Advanced Photo or (Photographic) System, a film system in which film of 24 mm width is enclosed in a cartridge for easy loading into a compatible camera, the image produced on the negative being 30·2 × 16·7 mm in size.A distinctive feature of APS is the ability to record information such as shutter speed, aperture setting, or the date the photograph was taken, in addition to the image. A typical APS camera can also record which of the three formats (of differing aspect ratio) supported by the system an image should be printed in.APS is a proprietary name in the United States.
1994 3 Sept. 22/1
All five companies involved..have pledged not to disclose any details about the film, called the advanced photographic system (APS).
27 Oct. Suppl. 17
APS (Advanced Photo System) was perhaps film's last stand, with its choice of three formats including a 3:1 panoramic.
APT n. advanced passenger train.
1967 12 Sept. 9/5
If the hovertrain looks promising, the A.P.T. looks equally so, and poor old deficit-ridden B.R. should not be kept waiting for the funds.
2001 Feb. 36/3
This is a live question for Railtrack in Britain, where we have negligible experience from the ill-fated APT, but a major construction programme for Virgin Trains presently under way.
APU n. auxiliary power unit.
1944 15 Aug. 92/2
The auxiliary power unit is installed in the hull and has an integral fuel tank, bilge pump and generator... A.P.U. engine.
2002 J. W. Hall ii. 29
She was thinking of the flare and touchdown, rotating ten degrees nose high, she was thinking of the APU and engine fire handles that she would have to override.
APY n. annual percentage yield (of interest on deposited funds).
1973 R. L. D. Morse Let. 18 June in
(93rd U.S. Congr., 1st Sess.)
Under present conditions all three rates (APY, APR and PPR) are required.
2009 12 Oct. 47
The Annual Percentage Yield (APY) and balance for a Premier Checking Account..is 0.01% APY on balances of $5.00 or more.
1915 C. Rittenhouse 67
Three Ledger folio columns are provided,..headed respectively, A.R. Folio (Accounts Receivable), C.C.D. Folio (Clients' Cash Disbursements), and C.C.S. Folio (Clients' Cash Suspense).
1983 19 Sept. 35/3
GL-Plus clears the monthly journal, the completely paid A/R and the completely paid A/P.
2007 S. Discenza in S. B. Buchbinder & N. H. Shanks viii. 219
Management of AR becomes exceedingly important in order to collect revenues generated to insure cash flow.
AR n. Autonomous Region; Autonomous Republic.
1973 G. Moseley vii. 157
The Tay Bac ar embraces an area equivalent to three provinces in the mountains between the Red River valley and the Laotian frontier.
1988 M. A. Jazayery & W. Winter 689
In the territory of the Georgian SSR are located the Abkhas and Adjar ARs and the South-Ossetian AD.
2005 A. Baschieri et al. World Bank Working Paper 10
Poverty rates..are higher in urban areas compared to rural areas, the highest poverty incidence being found in Nakhchivan AR.
A.R.A. n. British Associate of the Royal Academy.
1805 June 477/1
Designs for cottages, &c.; by J. Gandy, A. R. A.
2002 W. Baker 170
The Peaceful Thames, after F. Walker, A. R. A. by C. Waltner.
ARC n. Medicine AIDS-related complex.
1984 1 211
Homosexual patients with acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) and AIDS-related complex (ARC).
10 Sept. 20
Her symptoms were those of pneumonia, but blood tests showed she had Aids related complex (ARC), a precursor to Aids.
ARM n. adjustable-rate mortgage.
1980 29 June 40
To find out more about ARM or any of our other mortgage plans, visit a nearby Society office today.
2009 12 Feb. 16/2
Bankers and mortgage brokers promoted..the adjustable rate mortgage, or ARM, in order to lower mortgage payments temporarily to levels that might seem well within the means of lower-income buyers.
ARP n. Finance adjustable-rate preferred; cf.
1985 4 Nov. 7/1
While market conditions will affect the price of the ARP, the interest rate swing has less impact on its value because the security's dividend will be adjusted upward to reflect the change in interest rates.
2002 R. Conrad xi. 241
The best time to buy an ARP is after interest rates have dropped for a time, and the yield is near the bottom of its designated collar.
ARP n. air raid precautions (see ).
1935 27 Aug. 11/3
The accumulation of stocks of respirators and protective clothing for the A.R.P. services.
1977 E. R. Dodds xiv. 134
Shortly afterwards I joined the A.R.P. service myself and spent long nights in the Oxford control room.
2003 S. Mawer
Nothing. Bombed out... So I asked around, in the local pub, the corner shop, the ARP post, that kind of thing.
ARPS n. Finance adjustable-rate preferred stock (or share).
1982 22 Nov. 11/2
The investment bankers say the adjustable-rate preferred, called ARPS, is the cheapest form of permanant [sic] capital for banks.
1986 2nd Ser. 501 1237/1
The minority holders of common stock were to receive .50 share of a new adjustable rate preferred share (‘ARPS’) in place of each share of Crocker common stock held.
2001 M. Constas & J. K. Shim vi. 178
Adjustable-rate Preferred Stock (ARPS)..is preferred stock with a floating dividend rate that resets each quarter.
ARV n. and adj. Medicine and Virol.
(a) adj. antiretroviral;
(b) n. an antiretroviral drug; antiretroviral therapy.
1994 170 1286/1
Relative risk (RR) with antiretroviral therapy (ARV) alone.
2006 15 Nov. 11/2
Our members have seen first hand what a difference ARV drugs makes to these children who prior to receiving ARV would have had a very short life span.
2007 July 158
First introduced in 1987, anti-retroviral drugs—ARVs for short—block H.I.V'.s assault on the body's immune system.
AS n. British Education (originally) Advanced Supplementary, a former General Certificate of Education qualification regarded as a complement to the A level; (now chiefly) Advanced Subsidiary, the first half of an A level which is divided into two components, also constituting an independent qualification (see ); frequently attributive, esp. in AS level.
1984 2 May 3/1
The advanced supplementary, or AS level, will require two years of study, cover at least half the ground of an A level, and be worth half an A level to employers and..admission tutors.
1988 19 Jan. 13/7
There are interviews with students who are taking CPVE, BTEC, ‘A’ and AS courses.
1997 12 Feb. 11/1
The introduction of a new AS qualification to bring flexibility to sixth-form studies.
2001 26 July (‘Go Higher’ Suppl.) II/4
All new exams take time to bed, but the new AS has had more than its fair share of problems.
2002 P. Hodkinson & M. Bloomer in K. Evans et al. ii. 37
Can I change one of my As to an AS?
2005 14 Sept. 25/4
I..have a choice between continuing with general studies, in which I gained an A at AS-level, or taking an AS-level in critical thinking.
A.S. n. and adj. Anglo-Saxon.
1799 4 481
AS. Anglo Saxon.
1881 C. P. Mason
The genitive in A.S. was monan.
1901 May 122
These are survivals of the A.S. neuter plurals.
1992 A. L. Klinck
There is no evidence that the verbs could be used in these senses in the A-S period.
A.S. n. North American Education Associate in (also of) Science.
1942 W. C. Eells iii. 35
Associate in Science... A.S.
2006 S. H. Stafford iii. 36
An AS degree in computer science could help you gain an entry-level job in the field, or go on to a four-year institution and become a software programmer.
1962 13 Dec. 5/2
If the ASA rules that advertisements should not resemble editorial matter it may well be discouraging the more informative kind of advertising which many people welcome.
2008 B. Goldacre viii. 142
An advertising campaign which was ultimately terminated by the ASA since it breached their codes on truthfulness and substantiation.
ASA n. (also with pronunciation , , ) American Standards Association (used esp. with reference to a standard scale for rating photographic film speed).
1928 19 450/2
The change in name to 'American Standards Association' is a noteworthy improvement... It gives a balanced, pronounceable combination of initials, A.S.A., which has a decided advantage in practical use.
1976 4 451/1
All films have a speed number on the carton—an ASA number—which indicates how sensitive the film is to light.
2003 Summer 17
Expose Velvia (ASA 50 pushed one stop to ASA 100) with sufficient depth of field.
ASB n. Alternative Service Book.
1978 14 July 4/4
To exclude the psalms from the ASB would be to hasten their [sc. hymns'] decline.
1997 Winter 14/1
One commentator said, when the ASB was introduced, that the Church of England was stumbling into a ‘great act of forgetting’.
A.S.C. n. Army Service Corps; (also) a member of this organization.
1871 G. J. Wolseley
(p. xi. List of abbrevs.)
A.S.C.—Army Service Corps.
1893 W. J. Clarke 14
The N.C.O.'s of the A.S.C. erected a store close to the camp and a fort was afterwards constructed round these stores.
1916 Somme-Times 31 July in
I climbed up the rope of a sausage and joined two A.S.C.'s who were also watching the proceedings.
1941 W. Fortescue xxviii. 267
She continued to cope throughout the day, marshalling her men like a General of the A.S.C.
2006 Gloss. 358
A.S.C., Army Service Corps. Also known at ‘Ally Sloper's Cavalry,’ after a children's comic character, and as the Army Safety Corps.
ASD n. autism (or autistic) spectrum disorder.
ASD children were likely to have oromotor deficits.
2000 97 8734/1
This difference is less detectable among high-functioning adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
2012 5 Nov. 89/1
Many with ASD, and the families who care for them, suffer terribly.
ASH n. , Action on Smoking and Health.
1968 30 Jan. 5/1
Most recently there is the formation of the brand new Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) to act as a legal arm of the antismoking forces.
1983 30 June 36/1
After talking to ASH..I use the word ‘lethal’ advisedly.
28 Nov. 6
Until yesterday, Ash campaigners were convinced they had strong support for the proposals being in an NHS Bill in next week's Queen's Speech.
Computing (also with pronunciation , , , ) application-specific integrated circuit, an integrated circuit designed for one or more specific functions, rather than for general use.
1983 15 Aug. 97/1
Shipments of application-specific integrated circuits (Asic) will grow at a compounded annual rate of 25% through 1990.
1990 vii. 37/2
Arche is currently designing five custom ASIC chips, each a half-inch square.
2006 31 Jan. 36/4
The faster transmission rates make dedicated Asics necessary.
1954 120 469
Block of carboniferous limestone country (1000 to 1300 feet a.s.l.) immediately west-northwest of the village of Ystradfellte.
2005 63 56/2
Silt beds below about 18 m asl are nearly barren.
ASL n. American Sign Language.
1965 W. C. Stokoe et al. 293
Some ‘signs’ for numbers in ASL are simply configurations shown as letters are.
2002 7 Nov. 37
Kristin Mulrooney studies the reason in ASL behind the difference in how men and women fingerspell.
ASM n. air-to-surface missile.
1950 J. C. Fahey
Guided Missiles (M)..Air-to-Surface Missile..[Class] ASM.
8 Nov. 57
As with other areas of its guided-weapons inventory, China is bound to be building up its own capability to produce tactical ASMs.
ASM n. Theatre assistant stage manager.
1918 R. Pertwee 1919 iii. 54
A frantic assistant stage-manager deserted the prompt corner and grasped Freddie Manning by the arm... ‘Shall I ring down?’ queried the A.S.M.
1949 K. S. Allen iv. 30
The A.S.M. often combines the duties of a stage-hand with that of ‘props’ or stage-carpenter, or for any useful purpose around the stage.
2005 D. Nicholls 24
He received consolatory nods and never-minds from Debs from Wardrobe, Chrissy the ASM, Sam the lightning guy.
ASW n. Military anti-submarine warfare.
1944 13 Feb. (Magazine section) 11/4
The ASW officer is the sound wizard who works the detection devices.
1959 P. Frank vi. 118
‘ASW?’ ‘Anti-submarine warfare. I'll interpret.’
2004 Spring 8
The aircraft were stripped of their ASW equipment.
ASP n. Computing application service provider.
New report defines role of application service providers (ASPs).
14 May (Business section) 10
After failing to take off five or six years ago, ASPs are starting to come back into favour with investors.
rare Air-Sea Rescue Service.
1942 J. A. Hammerton
Abbreviations of Titles and Terms employed by the R.A.F... A/SRS. Air Sea Rescue Service.
1945 8 Aug. 2/2
One of A.S.R.S.'s busiest periods for United States rescues was in July, 1943.
ASSR n. now historical Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic.
1926 4 41/2
The Bashkir A.S.S.R. with Ufa as its capital city.
1998 A. Dalby 425/2
First is Khalkha, the national language of modern Mongolia, which is very close to Menggu,..and also close to Buryat, of the Buryat ASSR to the north.
AST n. Canadian Atlantic Standard Time.
1933 Sept. 184/2
The hours of transmission are from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Atlantic Standard Time, daily, and from 6 to 11 p.m., AST.
12 Feb. d1
One of the men's quarter-final games is slated to begin at 11 p.m. (AST).
ASTM n. American Society for Testing and Materials.
1906 Dec. 479
The aging of Portland cement... By H. Spencer Conover, A.S.T.M.
1954 5 Apr. 1386/3
‘Kerosene’ is commoner than ‘kerosine’. The ASTM and ASA have preferred ‘kerosine’, probably in order to make it consistent with ‘gasoline’.
26 Sept. (Sports section) c7
I think instead of a waiver it would be better to look at these other tests and see if it would be easier to adopt those standards in addition to the ASTM.
ASTMS n. now historical (also with pronunciation , ) Association of Scientific, Technical, and Managerial Staffs.
1967 in J. Hughes & H. Pollins
A new body—the Association of Scientific, Technical and Managerial Staffs—would be established. The Executive Council of the ASTMS would consist of six members each from the Executives of the present unions.
1979 C. Jenkins & B. Sherman ii. 31
ASTMS..has over 440,000 members and is a general union.
2006 Jan. 60/3
ASTMS and Tass, which became MSF, and now Unifi (formerly Bifu).
ASV n. air(craft) to surface vessel.
1944 (U.S. War Dept. Techn. Man. 11–467) 364
1966 D. Taylor iii. 40
The actual performance obtained with this form of A.S.V. equipment depended on aircraft height, state of sea (because of sea returns), operator's experience, etc.
2002 T. G. Mahnken v. 154
They also developed Air-to-Surface-Vessel (ASV) radar sets to allow aircraft to detect ships at sea.
ASV n. American Standard Version.
1905 12 July 7/3
Scholars who know the many excellencies of this ‘A.S.V.’ can advocate its conservative use in the study, the family, the Bible class.
2001 120 525
The NASB and NRSV translate as ‘when the wine had gone out of Nabal’, closely following the AV and ASV.
AT n. Medicine ataxia telangiectasia.
1966 26 Nov. 1193
The association between A.T. and malignancy, particularly lymphoreticular malignancy, appears firmly established.
AT, which is also known as Boder-Sedgwick syndrome, is so rare that it only affects three in one million people worldwide.
ATA n. Air Transport Auxiliary.
1939 36 373/2
Air Transport Auxiliary. A.T.A. was originally formed by British Airways for..assisting the regular airline people to maintain communications during..bombing attacks on this country.
1984 17 July 29/3
This first of two programmes covers the period when the ATA was formed.
2008 5 May 23/1
One of a handful of ‘Atagirls’, women who served during the war as ATA (Air Transport Auxiliary) pilots.
(also AT & T, AT and T)
U.S. American Telephone and Telegraph Company.
1898 ii. 363
A. T. & T. pay stations, metallic.
1908 G. R. Johnston 5
The A.T. & T. general statements in the first paragraph quoted may be met by general denial.
1965 J. A. Michener
Until the day when A.T. and T. drops to forty and you have an economic crisis.
Joel Engel..whom Mr Cooper called at AT&T's Bell Laboratories that day, says he does not remember taking the call.
ATB n. Cycling (originally U.S.) all-terrain bike.
1983 27 June 12/2
The new bikes have their own name, ATB, for All-Terrain-Bike.
2008 D. Stokes & W. Lomax vi. 173/1
By 2000, ATBs accounted for over two-thirds of all bicycle sales in the UK.
ATC n. air traffic control (also controller).
1946 Aug. 192/2
A pilot, bringing a ship into a major airport recently, checked with traffic control... Control told him: ‘Cleared to descend to 1,500 feet.’ He rogered, descended, checked in again at 1,500 feet. This time ATC ordered: ‘Descend to 5,000 feet.’
1952 June 71/3
From the ATC point of view, a landing by a Comet with one engine out of action would receive the same priority as one for any other aeroplane.
2004 M. Ruppert xx. 377
[He] was the ATC handling both Flight 93, departing from Newark, and Flight 175 from Boston.
ATC n. Air Training Corps.
1941 39 57/2
The birth of the A.T.C.
2007 K. Barnes I. i. xi. 105
I was poorly co-ordinated on the drill square and thought that the ATC, and..the RAF for my national service, would suit me better.
ATC n. Automatic Train Control.
1928 Oct. 34/2
He'd potter around an engine that was being equipped with about twelve hundred dollars worth of ATC accessories.
1958 14 Mar. 336/1
Before the Second World War..in general, the Great Western Railway had A.T.C. and the other British railways did not.
2003 E. Albrechtsen & P. Hokstad in T. Bedford & P. H. A. J. M. van Gelder 26
If train A passes the exit signal, the ATC should stop the train from leaving the station.
ATE n. automated test equipment.
1976 4 Apr. f17/4
Digital computer maintenance experience including airborne digital processors, and/or minicomputers associated with automated test equipment (ATE).
2003 M. Levin & T. T. Kalal Foreword p. xix
As our business grew, the technology necessary to design ATE became increasingly complex.
ATF n. U.S. Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (Bureau), a law enforcement agency within the United States Justice Department responsible (since 1968) for enforcing laws and regulations relating to firearms, alcohol, tobacco, explosives, and arson (made an independent bureau within the Treasury Department in 1972, and moved to the Justice Department in 2003).
1969 1 Dec. i. 21/1
ATF and U.S. customs agents are working with the Air Force's office of special investigations in the probe.
1981 Sept. 16/3
The ATF decided to identify California wines ‘distinguished by unique characteristics such as climate, soil, and elevation’.
10 Oct. a33/2
New federal enforcement tools..would beef up the ability of ATF to crack down on gun trafficking.
ATM n. Computing asynchronous transfer mode.
1987 14 340/1
Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) is a promising new multiplexing and switching concept based on asynchronous ‘on demand’ use of short fixed size time slots, called cells.
1997 Oct. 58/1
Once the unsinkable Titanic of high-speed networking, asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) looks like it might have a hole in its hull.
4 Nov. 82
The cost of ATM, sometimes referred to as cell relay technology, was prohibitive next to technologies such as IP over Ethernet.
ATM n. originally U.S. automatic (also automated) teller machine (see ).
1975 Oct. 6/2
An ATM requires a much smaller investment than construction of a full-fledged branch office.
1989 Autumn 49
Need cash at midnight? Hit the ATM.
2009 20 Apr. r4/4
Some mobile-banking services offer lists of ATM locations and maps on their Web sites.
ATM adv. colloquial (chiefly in electronic communications) at the moment.
1992 Backup PC to Server Tape Device in vsmnet.networks.desktop.pathworks
The app works on most pc's but buzz's [sic] (bugs minor ATM) out on some!.. Only works ATM (at the moment) on DECNet-ULTRIX machines.
2001 24 Apr. (Sun BT Offer Suppl.) 3/1
ATM: At The Moment.
2012 G. Szekely & J. A. Bucknam iv. 214/2
Calling all parents: FYI IDK how, but we r in need of black yarn again! Ud think the kids are eating it :) LOL! That's all Atm Gtg Ttyl!
ATOL n. , , British Air Travel Organizer's Licence (also Licensing).
1973 13 May (Review section) 38/4
Cooks faraway holidays C.A.A. ATOL 265ABC.
1981 S. J. Burkart & S. Medlik
The four air travel organizers' licenses (ATOL).
2007 July 67/1
The house was my main investment, though I also had to find money for an ATOL bond, the travel industry's customer compensation scheme.
ATP n. Tennis Association of Tennis Professionals, the governing body organizing the main men's professional tour.A proprietary name.
1973 8 June 36/4
The A.T.P. represents all of the leading tennis players.
2 Nov. 89/3
Tennis... The season-ending ATP World Tour finals begin..with the first of five days in this round-robin stage.
A.T.S. n. animal tub-sized (see ).
(Spalding & Hodge)
Animal Tub-sized, or A.T.S., is a term employed to denote the more costly method of passing the manufactured sheet through a bath or ‘tub’ of animal size.
2005 R. J. Prytherch
Tub-sized paper (abbreviated ‘T.S.’) is strong and has a high resistance to moisture. Also called ‘Animal Tub-Sized’ (abbreviated ‘A.T.S.’).
ATV n. all-terrain vehicle.
1969 Jan. 78/2
Latest all-terrain vehicle (ATV) is the sippy Attex, a six-wheeled amphibian for wilderness penetrators.
2005 30 May 4/1
Each year more Jeeps, ATVs, giant-tired rock crawlers and dirt bikes traverse once-remote desert trails around Moab.
ATV n. British (now historical) Associated Television, a British television company broadcasting between 1955 and 1981.
1955 29 Oct. 7/5
ATV, which until three weeks ago was called Associated Broadcasting, now has a co-production arrangements with the Birmingham contractor.
By far the greatest impact made by a single television programme in 1980 resulted from the screening..of ATV's Death of a Princess.
24 Mar. 37
Essex was made a Fellow of the Royal Television Society in 1975. When ATV was restructured as Central Television seven years later..he retired.
Physics Ångström (or Ångström's) unit; cf. sense .
1894 13 373
The table and drawing show with a slit-width of 10 Angström's units all five maxima, but each is displaced 5 A. U. towards the violet.
1929 6 2
An actinometer which was sensitive in the region 2950–3900 å.u.
2006 D. Jubb i. 32
The color red is 8000 AU.
AU n. Astronomy astronomical unit.
1910 16 July 568
We find Mercury about .4 of an astronomical unit (A. U.) from the sun.
1984 2 Jan. 48/3
Halley will be..0·97 AU from Earth at the time of the Giotto encounter.
Uranus orbits the sun at an average distance of 19.2 AU.
[graphic abbreviation of classical Latin annō urbis conditae in the year of the foundation of the city (of Rome) ( < annō , ablative of annus year (see ) + urbis genitive of urbs city, city of Rome (see ) + conditae , feminine genitive singular of past participle of condere to found, establish: see ) or in some cases perhaps of classical Latin ab urbe conditā ]
in the year of the city (of Rome) having been founded.
1728 J. Morgan I. 14
This Epocha is express'd by these three Capitals, A.U.C. signifying Anno Urbis Conditæ and begins 752 years before the Christian Æra.
1785 J. Robertson 163
A.U.C. Anno Urbis Conditæ, in the year after the building of Rome.
1824 J. L. Blake
Fifteen thousand were slain, and 24,000 surrendered themselves prisoner to the victor, A.U.C. 705, B.C. 49.
1874 H. R. Reynolds App. 531
There was a genuine Co-principate of Tiberius and Augustus before the middle of 765 a.u.c.
1906 A. Sloman 309
To turn a date b.c. to a date a.u.c. subtract the date b.c. from 754.
1992 A. Zameenzad in M. Bradbury & J. Cooke 102
June 650∗ AUC it was, the month of Sassia's first wedding; the second year, I think, of the consulship of Marius.
AUEW n. British (now historical) Amalgamated Union of Engineering Workers.
1971 9 Nov. 19/7
The 1.4 m member AUEW—the most important craft union in the country.
2000 B. Bousquet in C. Newland & K. Sesay 114
When I asked Terry Duffy of the AUEW, he also gave us 100 per cent support, whereas the leader of the miners' union, Arthur Scargill, refused.
AV n. alternative vote (see ).
1965 6 Aug. 174/1
His colleagues would happily settle for the single-member-constituency AV system.
2005 1 July 32/6
This proposes using the alternative vote (AV), which under many analyses is less proportional than first-past-the-post.
audio/video; frequently attributive.Sometimes difficult to distinguish from uses with the sense ‘audio-visual’ (cf. ).
[1951 23 June 14/1
The A-V firm is affiliated with Audio-Video Recording and Audio-Video Products companies here.]
1978 18 Feb. 50/4
The Beta or VHS systems also widely used in the A/V market.
2006 Feb. 97/2
You will need to connect the red and white audio cables through the AV sockets to add sound.
audio-visual.Sometimes difficult to distinguish from uses with the sense ‘audio/video’.
1970 1 Aug. 14/2
BASF offers reel-to-reel and cassette tapes in the A-V educational market.
The much-talked about convergence between PCs and audio-visual (AV) equipment is a task that is becoming fuss-free.
Authorized Version (of the Bible) (frequently with the).
1845 J. Kitto I. 117/2
The oak is, in fact, less frequently mentioned in the original than in the A.V., where it occurs so often as to suggest that the oak is as conspicuous and as common in Palestine as in this country.
1868 B. F. Westcott iii. 334
In the later (Irish) editions of the ‘Rhemes and Doway’ Bible and New Testament there are considerable alterations, and the text is far nearer to that in the A.V.
1982 G. Hammond 237
The same phrase occurs twice in Genesis... Tyndale renders both as ‘speak kindly’. The AV follows his rendering.
2006 L. Branch 256
Campbell has asserted that in his early works Bunyan used..the Geneva Bible..and even the AV.
AVC n. automatic volume control.
The devices AVC and VL are used throughout to indicate automatic volume control device and volume limiter respectively.
1980 H. S. Bennett iv. 195
The AVC, or automatic volume control, circuit found in car radios.
2006 Apr. 22/1
Automatic Volume Control. (AVC) Selectively compresses loud bursts of volume that are annoying when watching a program.
AVH n. now historical the Hungarian secret police, from 1949 to 1956; cf.
[ < Hungarian ÁVH, initialism < the initial letters of either Államvédelmi Hatóság (short for Belügyminisztérium Államvédelmi Hatósága, lit. ‘state security authority of the Ministry of the Interior’ (1949)) or Államvédelmi Hivatal, lit. ‘state security office’, an alternative name of the same organization.]
1953 29 Mar. §vi. 9/3
The structure of terror in Hungary consists of..a pyramid with the Allam Vedelmi Hasotag (State Security Authority, or secret police), at the apex. A.V.H., which has 50,000 men and women in its force, is..the party's harsh punitive arm.
1973 R. Hayes xxiii. 145
Neither AVH nor KGB had a watch on Mityas' house. He'd become such a non-person that not even they worried about whom he saw.
2006 P. Kenez iv. 94
Five years later Ries was tortured to death in an AVH prison.
AVI n. Computing Audio Video Interleave (or Interleaved), a file format for the storage of digital video and audio sequences.
1991 21 Oct. s100/3
Microsoft is developing an interim software-only solution for motion video with sound called Audio Visual Interleave (AVI).
2006 May 47/1
If you're having difficulty playing a particular AVI file, it could be because the file itself is damaged or incomplete.
1922 G. Bell 8 Oct.
II. xxii. 652
The King went straight to the heart of things, asking the A.V.M. what he could do to protect us from attack.
1981 P. White 14 Nov.
I twisted Boycott's tail a bit by asking what had become of his friend Parselle (a Wing-Co, later AVM when I was in the ME).
2009 A. Brookes vi. 53
AVM Nigel Baldwin..flew four tours as a Vulcan pilot.
AVO n. now historical the Hungarian secret police, before 1949cf.
[ < Hungarian ÁVO, initialism < the initial letters of Államvédelmi Osztály (short for Magyar Államrendőrség Államvédelmi Osztálya, lit. ‘state security department of the Hungarian state police’ (1946)).]
(Yugoslav Min. Foreign Affairs)
Hostile elements are sent to Yugoslavia to carry out acts of espionage, terrorist activities and sabotage... This has been proved by public trials against the spies of the Hungarian A.V.O.
2002 A. Phillips ii. xi. 161
Two unpleasant members of the AVO secret police came to the press and the Party man..called Imre up..and explained the accusations against him as the two AVO men took turns kicking him.
[ < Afrikaans AWB, initialism < the initial letters of Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging]
South African the Afrikaner Resistance Movement, a far-right paramilitary Afrikaner organization, established in 1973.
1974 17 Oct. 18
The leader of the AWB is Mr Eugene Terreblanche, an ex-policeman.
2005 S. Frankental & O. B. Sichone vii. 212
As..apartheid withered away..the AWB swore that they would fight to preserve the Afrikaner nation.
Motoring all-wheel drive; cf.
1959 Apr. 60/2
All-wheel-drive helped rigs keep going in slippery clay during very rainy summer... For example, one Dodge power wagon (a.w.d.) served as a welding truck.
1984 July 129/1
Is all-wheel drive (awd) yet another marketing gimmick, or is it a valuable feature every consumer needs in personal transportation?
2004 July 36/3
Working in concert with the stability-control system (VSA), the AWD makes handling foolproof.
Politics (originally and chiefly U.S.) = , .
1994 14 Nov. (Lifestyle section) d1/6
I have brought the official poster boy of the Angry White Male with me today... He'll be accepting other AWM applications as soon as he finishes passing out cyanide capsules to all the cowering liberals who haven't bought his books.
2001 Aug. 72/2
The public turned against A.W.M.'s after Republican freshmen on the Hill overplayed their hand with the government shutdown of 1995.
2006 N. Sagan
Do you think I'm an AWM?.. And if I am, does that make me racist?
AWS n. British Railways automatic warning system, a system which provides audible indications of upcoming signals.
1961 July 48/2
A third of the total route mileage of the main trunk routes has now had A.W.S. installed.
1992 S. Hall 63/2
AWS equipment is often not provided at large stations where speeds are low, even though the approach lines are equipped. The start of the AWS gap is indicated by a circular white sign showing ‘AWS’ with a red cross.
AWU n. Australian Workers' Union.
1904 15 Oct. 8/5
The A.W.U. organisers are having rough rows to hoe at nearly all sheds in Victoria.
1983 25 Nov. 6/1
Mr. Frank Mitchell, federal secretary of the..Australian Workers' Union (AWU), issued an immediate rebuff to Mr. Dolan, saying work would proceed.
6 June 27
The AWU wants to see successful resource companies in this country, not poorly led corporations.
(plural unchanged or with -s)
1958 26 May 149/1
While the AYM are literary conservatives, they are attracted in their political thinking toward radical solutions.
1958 11 July 67/2
A vigorous but implausible book about an AYM, strictly lower-class.
2000 A. Calcutt 29/2
Although neither of them liked being tagged as AYMs..their early work seems to merit the label.
AZT n. Pharmacology azidothymidine.
Reports on experiments with the drug azidothymidine, or AZT, were given at a four-day conference sponsored by the American Society of Microbiology.
1 Feb. 6
HIV-positive pregnant women are to be given AZT from 28 weeks until they go into labour.
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This entry has been updated (OED Third Edition, June 2011).
In this entry:
In other dictionaries:
- My entries(1)
- A, n.OE
- a, pron.a1225
- a, adj.?a1160
- a, prep.1OE
- a, prep.2c1275
- a, conj.?c1335
- a, int.1c1175
- a, int.2c1440
- a-, prefix1
- a-, prefix2c1275
- a-, prefix31673
- a-, prefix4
- a-, prefix5
- a-, prefix6
- -a, suffix1
- -a, suffix2
- A1, adj.1776
- A2, n.1999
- aa, n.11430
- aa, n.21859
- aal, n.1799
- Aalenian, n. and adj.1882
- aandblom, n.1793
- aandblommetjie, n.1870
- Aanderaa, n.1969
- aapa, n.1998
- aardvark, n.1785
- aardwolf, n.1833
- aaron, n.1?c1425
- Aaron, n.21565
- Aaronic, adj.1652