Metonic cycle
Cycle Cy"cle (s?"k'l), n. [F. ycle, LL. cyclus, fr. Gr. ky`klos ring or circle, cycle; akin to Skr. cakra wheel, circle. See {Wheel}.] 1. An imaginary circle or orbit in the heavens; one of the celestial spheres. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

2. An interval of time in which a certain succession of events or phenomena is completed, and then returns again and again, uniformly and continually in the same order; a periodical space of time marked by the recurrence of something peculiar; as, the cycle of the seasons, or of the year. [1913 Webster]

Wages . . . bear a full proportion . . . to the medium of provision during the last bad cycle of twenty years. --Burke. [1913 Webster]

3. An age; a long period of time. [1913 Webster]

Better fifty years of Europe than a cycle of Cathay. --Tennyson. [1913 Webster]

4. An orderly list for a given time; a calendar. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

We . . . present our gardeners with a complete cycle of what is requisite to be done throughout every month of the year. --Evelyn. [1913 Webster]

5. The circle of subjects connected with the exploits of the hero or heroes of some particular period which have served as a popular theme for poetry, as the legend of Arthur and the knights of the Round Table, and that of Charlemagne and his paladins. [1913 Webster]

6. (Bot.) One entire round in a circle or a spire; as, a cycle or set of leaves. --Gray. [1913 Webster]

7. A bicycle or tricycle, or other light velocipede. [1913 Webster]

8. A motorcycle. [PJC]

9. (Thermodynamics) A series of operations in which heat is imparted to (or taken away from) a working substance which by its expansion gives up a part of its internal energy in the form of mechanical work (or being compressed increases its internal energy) and is again brought back to its original state. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

10. (Technology) A complete positive and negative, or forward and reverse, action of any periodic process, such as a vibration, an electric field oscillation, or a current alternation; one period. Hence: (Elec.) A complete positive and negative wave of an alternating current. The number of cycles (per second) is a measure of the frequency of an alternating current. [Webster 1913 Suppl. + PJC]

{Calippic cycle}, a period of 76 years, or four Metonic cycles; -- so called from Calippus, who proposed it as an improvement on the Metonic cycle.

{Cycle of eclipses}, a period of about 6,586 days, the time of revolution of the moon's node; -- called {Saros} by the Chaldeans.

{Cycle of indiction}, a period of 15 years, employed in Roman and ecclesiastical chronology, not founded on any astronomical period, but having reference to certain judicial acts which took place at stated epochs under the Greek emperors.

{Cycle of the moon}, or {Metonic cycle}, a period of 19 years, after the lapse of which the new and full moon returns to the same day of the year; -- so called from Meton, who first proposed it.

{Cycle of the sun}, {Solar cycle}, a period of 28 years, at the end of which time the days of the month return to the same days of the week. The dominical or Sunday letter follows the same order; hence the solar cycle is also called the {cycle of the Sunday letter}. In the Gregorian calendar the solar cycle is in general interrupted at the end of the century. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Metonic cycle — Metonic Me*ton ic, a. [Cf. F. m[ e]tonique.] Pertaining to, or discovered by, Meton, the Athenian. [1913 Webster] {Metonic year} or {Metonic cycle}. (Astron.) See under {Cycle}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Metonic cycle — [mə tän′ik] n. [after Meton, Athenian astronomer (5th c. B.C. )] a period of about 19 years (almost 235 lunar revolutions), in which the phases of the moon repeat on the same dates as in the previous period: used for finding the date of Easter …   English World dictionary

  • Metonic cycle — Heliocentric Solar System In astronomy and calendar studies, the Metonic cycle or Enneadecaeteris (from Greek words for nineteen years) is a period of very close to 19 years which is remarkable for being very nearly a common multiple of the solar …   Wikipedia

  • metonic cycle — noun , A particular approximate common multiple of the tropical year and the synodic month; in other words, the 19 year period over which the lunar phases occur on the same dates. According to the Metonic Cycle, a lunar calendar begins on the… …   Wiktionary

  • Metonic cycle — /mi ton ik/, Astron. a cycle of 235 synodic months, very nearly equal to 19 years, after which the new moon occurs on the same day of the year as at the beginning of the cycle with perhaps a shift of one day, depending on the number of leap years …   Universalium

  • Metonic cycle — /mətɒnɪk ˈsaɪkəl/ (say muhtonik suykuhl) noun a cycle of nineteen years, after which the new moon recurs on the same day of the year as at the beginning of the cycle. {named after the discoverer, Meton, 5th century BC Athenian astronomer. See ic} …   Australian English dictionary

  • Metonic cycle —    a unit of time equal to 19 years, used in astronomy in predicting the phases of the Moon. By coincidence, 19 years is equal to 6939.602 days and 235 lunar months is equal to 6939.689 days, just 125 minutes longer. As a result, the phases of… …   Dictionary of units of measurement

  • Metonic cycle — [mɪ tɒnɪk] noun a period of 19 years (235 lunar months), after which the new and full moons return to the same day of the year. Origin named after Metōn, an Athenian astronomer of the 5th cent. BC …   English new terms dictionary

  • metonic cycle — n. a period of 19 years (235 lunar months) covering all the changes of the moon s position relative to the sun and the earth. Etymology: Gk Meton, Athenian astronomer of the 5th c. BC …   Useful english dictionary

  • Cycle — Cy cle (s? k l), n. [F. ycle, LL. cyclus, fr. Gr. ky klos ring or circle, cycle; akin to Skr. cakra wheel, circle. See {Wheel}.] 1. An imaginary circle or orbit in the heavens; one of the celestial spheres. Milton. [1913 Webster] 2. An interval… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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