English dictionary

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English adjective: late

1. late being or occurring at an advanced period of time or after a usual or expected time

SamplesLate evening.
Late 18th century.
A late movie.
Took a late flight.
Had a late breakfast.

Similaradvanced, after-hours, latish, posthumous, ripe


Antonymsearly, middle

2. late after the expected or usual time; delayed

SamplesA belated birthday card.
I'm late for the plane.
The train is late.
Tardy children are sent to the principal.
Always tardy in making dental appointments.

Synonymsbelated, tardy



3. late of the immediate past or just previous to the present time

SamplesA late development.
Their late quarrel.
His recent trip to Africa.
In recent months.
A recent issue of the journal.



Antonymsfuture, present

4. late having died recently

SamplesHer late husband.


Antonymsalive, live

5. late of a later stage in the development of a language or literature; used especially of dead languages

SamplesLate Greek.

SimilarModern, New, New

Domain categorylinguistics

Antonymsmiddle, early

6. late at or toward an end or late period or stage of development

SamplesThe late phase of feudalism.
A later symptom of the disease.
Later medical science could have saved the child.


Similaradvanced, tardive


7. late (used especially of persons) of the immediate past

SamplesThe former president.
Our late President is still very active.
The previous occupant of the White House.

Synonymsformer, previous


Antonymsfuture, present

English adverb: late

1. late later than usual or than expected

SamplesThe train arrived late.
We awoke late.
The children came late to school.
Notice came so tardily that we almost missed the deadline.
I belatedly wished her a happy birthday.

Synonymsbelatedly, tardily

Antonymsahead of time, too soon, early

2. late to an advanced time

SamplesDeep into the night.
Talked late into the evening.


3. late at an advanced age or stage

SamplesShe married late.
Undertook the project late in her career.

4. late in the recent past

SamplesHe was in Paris recently.
Lately the rules have been enforced.
As late as yesterday she was fine.
Feeling better of late.
The spelling was first affected, but latterly the meaning also.

Synonymslately, latterly, of late, recently

Based on WordNet 3.0 copyright © Princeton University.
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