Definition of omnibus in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈɒmnɪbəs/


1A volume containing several books previously published separately: an omnibus of her first trilogy
More example sentences
  • Every couple of years the monthly issues would be gathered up and published in an omnibus, what the publishers referred to as ‘phone books’ as they had the same size and feel as the Yellow Pages.
  • In reviewing a stack of recent volumes sent for this omnibus, I was struck by the number of times the subject arose, in one form or another.
  • The omnibus has made somewhat of a comeback in recent years with everyone from Robert Ludlum to John Grisham and Wilbur Smith combining their novels into one edition.
1.1British A single edition of two or more consecutive television or radio programmes previously broadcast separately: Coronation Street’s rival EastEnders was boosted by a weekend omnibus
More example sentences
  • More than £1 million is being invested in the project which provides five daily, ten-minute episodes, broadcast Monday to Friday and repeated as an omnibus at the weekend.
  • Then, in addition to all that, you have the soap omnibuses.
  • Insiders have explained that sometimes, in the dead of night, one can still hear Dr Schlosser's impassioned wails, and his wife's half-witted giggling at her favourite soap opera omnibus.
2 dated A bus: a horse-drawn omnibus
More example sentences
  • Yet this tableau of horse-drawn omnibuses, coaches, carts, bicycles, and ubiquitous Cooks Tour advertisements is more than one of moment: it validates an epoch of Britain's prosperity and London's greatness.
  • She was an enthusiastic participant in Victorian Evening, dressing up and riding in the horse-drawn omnibus - a true ambassador for the town.
  • Donnegal widened and straightened the road from Durham and established a line of omnibuses to transport tourists and visitors up to the ‘beautiful haven by the lake.’


Comprising several items: omnibus editions of novels
More example sentences
  • A mainstream newspaper is therefore an omnibus vehicle that packages a number of distinct products.
  • Well, let's start with Julianne, spending bills, spending bills - what are we likely to see here, some big, bulky omnibus spending program package passed this week?
  • I couldn't agree more with Zizek that modern capitalism makes omnibus promises (mostly implied) that result in silly stuff like chocolate Ex-Lax and the decaf latte.


Early 19th century: via French from Latin, literally 'for all', dative plural of omnis.

  • The 1820s saw the introduction in Paris of a horse-drawn vehicle that carried passengers along a fixed route for a fare. This was called a voiture omnibus, a ‘vehicle for everybody’. When it came to London the vehicle was called simply an omnibus. Though ‘omnibus’ was taken from French, its origin is a Latin form meaning ‘for all’, based on omnis ‘all’, and by the 1930s people had shortened this rather pompous, learned word to bus. In the 1830s an omnibus came to be a volume containing several works previously published separately. Omnis also gives us words such as omnivorous (early 17th century) literally ‘all-eating’, and omniscient (early 17th century) ‘knowing everything’, and omnipotent (Middle English) ‘all powerful.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: omni|bus

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