Definition of generation in English:

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Pronunciation: /dʒɛnəˈreɪʃ(ə)n/


1All of the people born and living at about the same time, regarded collectively: one of his generation’s finest songwriters
More example sentences
  • Despite being fêted as the greatest Shakespearean actor of his generation, he used to claim that he never understood a character until he found the right hat.
  • It's a journeyman actor's CV, not the kind that, in our fantasies, we would fashion for one of the greatest actors of a generation.
  • There isn't another actor in his generation who could have carried off the conflict and humour of the character with the same skill.
age, age group, peer group, cohort, stage of life
1.1The average period, generally considered to be about thirty years, in which children grow up, become adults, and have children of their own: the same families have lived here for generations
More example sentences
  • Substantial urban change is generally expected to span prolonged periods: decades, generations, centuries.
  • Even as courts have, over the past two generations, grown more dismissive of hunches, there has been a counter-revolution in the cognitive sciences.
  • Do foods produced from today's high-yield crops have the same nutritional quality as those grown in generations past?
ages, an age, years, aeons, an aeon, a long time, an eternity
British informal donkey's years, yonks
1.2A set of members of a family regarded as a single step or stage in descent: [as modifier, in combination]: a third-generation Canadian
More example sentences
  • That dining table is a place where mom's going to prepare the Thanksgiving Dinner for two or three generations of family members and share and create memories.
  • Over 50 family members from three generations crowded in for the party.
  • Mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, family members of all generations have been lost.
1.3A group of people of similar age involved in a particular activity: a new generation of actors and directors
More example sentences
  • But the anti-capitalist movement represents, above all, the entry of a new generation into political activity.
  • His appearance as Hamlet at the Old Vic Theatre in London established him as one of the most talented actors of his generation, ideally suited to the great Shakespearean roles.
  • It launched the careers of a new generation of Scottish actors.
1.4A single stage in the development of a type of product or technology: a new generation of rear-engined sports cars [as modifier, in combination]: fourth-generation broadband
More example sentences
  • We've run into a number of issues that are often cured in subsequent product generations, but that are very frustrating when initially encountered.
  • Attention must therefore be paid to all aspects of the ecosystem and to their interactions when developing future generations of supercomputers.
  • Chip makers are increasingly turning to collaborative projects to help reduce the growing cost of developing future generations of process technology.
crop, batch, wave, type, range
2 [mass noun] The production or creation of something: methods of electricity generation the generation of wealth
More example sentences
  • Oil was in turn followed by gas, increasingly used for electricity generation, which brought power and light to households throughout the world.
  • With the higher demand last year, he said its power plants had used less natural gas in electricity generation.
  • The main example I chose was the use of nuclear power for electricity generation.
creation, causing, causation, making, engendering, spawning, production, initiation, origination, inception, occasioning, prompting, kindling, triggering, inspiration
2.1The propagation of living organisms; procreation.
procreation, reproduction, propagation, breeding, fathering, siring, engendering, spawning, creation
literary begetting


Middle English: via Old French from Latin generatio(n-), from the verb generare (see generate).

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: gen¦er|ation

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