AskDefine | Define terminal

Dictionary Definition

terminal adj
1 being or situated at an end; "the endmost pillar"; "terminal buds on a branch"; "a terminal station"; "the terminal syllable" [syn: endmost]
2 of or relating to or situated at the ends of a delivery route; "freight pickup is a terminal service"; "terminal charges"
3 relating to or occurring in a term or fixed period of time; "terminal examinations"; "terminal payments"
4 occurring at or forming an end or termination; "his concluding words came as a surprise"; "the final chapter"; "the last days of the dinosaurs"; "terminal leave" [syn: concluding, final, last]
5 causing or ending in or approaching death; "a terminal patient"; "terminal cancer"


1 station where transport vehicles load or unload passengers or goods [syn: terminus, depot]
2 a contact on an electrical device (such as a battery) at which electric current enters or leaves [syn: pole]
3 electronic equipment consisting of a device providing access to a computer; has a keyboard and display

User Contributed Dictionary



  • (US)
    • /ˈtərmɪnəl/
    • /"t@rmIn@l/


From terminalis, from terminus


  1. A building in an airport where passengers transfer from ground transportation to the facilities that allow them to board airplanes.
  2. A rail station where service begins and ends; the end of the line. For example: Grand Central Terminal in New York City.
  3. In electronics, the end of a line where signals are either transmitted or received, or a point along the length of a line where the signals are made available to apparatus.
  4. An electric contact on a battery.
  5. In telecommunications, the apparatus to send and/or receive signals on a line, such as a telephone or network device.
  6. In the context of computer hardware, a device for entering data into a computer or a communications system and/or displaying data received, especially a device equipped with a keyboard and some sort of textual display.
  7. A computer program that emulates a terminal (6).


  1. Fatal, resulting in death.
  2. Appearing at the end, top or apex of a physical object.
  3. Occurring at the end of a word, sentence, or period of time.



  1. final
  2. deadly


Related terms

Extensive Definition

Terminal may mean:
In travel and transport:
In electronics, telecommunication, and computers:
In sciences:
  • Terminal object, a type of object studied in category theory
  • Leaf node in graphs, trees and computer programs, a node without children. The term terminal may also refer to vertices in a graph defining endpoints of a Steiner tree.
  • Terminal symbol in formal grammar, a symbol that cannot be further divided
  • Polymer terminal in chemistry, the end residue on any polymer chain
  • Terminal velocity in physics, the maximimum velocity of an object or body affected by gravitational force from a larger object at which it ceases to accelerate due usually to atmospheric drag (see also Terminal velocity (disambiguation))
In fiction:
Terminal may also refer to:
  • Terminal (band) was an Alternative/Indie rock band form Texas, USA
  • Terminal, the 2006 film written by Rock Shaink Jr. and directed by Fernando Beltran
  • Terminal illness, a progressive disease that is expected to cause death
  • Terminal, a novel by Robin Cook
  • Terminal (Colin Forbes novel), a novel by Colin Forbes
  • Terminal sedation, the practice of inducing unconsciousness in a terminally ill person for the remainder of the person's life
  • the song "Terminal" by Rupert Holmes, from his first solo album, 1970's Widescreen
  • The Terminal, a 2004 film by Steven Spielberg, in which a man is stuck in an airport terminal
  • Terminal Entry, a 1986 movie directed by John Kincade, about teenage hackers stumbling on a terrorist computer network.
  • the Potsdam Conference, code-named “Terminal”, the last Allied meeting of World War II
terminal in Czech: Terminál
terminal in Danish: Terminal
terminal in German: Terminal
terminal in Spanish: Terminal
terminal in French: Terminal
terminal in Korean: 터미널
terminal in Croatian: Terminal (razdvojba)
terminal in Indonesian: Terminal
terminal in Italian: Terminale
terminal in Hebrew: טרמינל
terminal in Dutch: Terminal
terminal in Japanese: ターミナル
terminal in Norwegian Nynorsk: Terminal
terminal in Polish: Terminal
terminal in Portuguese: Terminal
terminal in Russian: Терминал
terminal in Slovak: Terminál
terminal in Sundanese: Terminal
terminal in Swedish: Terminal
terminal in Turkish: Terminal
terminal in Ukrainian: Термінал

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

CRT, L, Z, anchorage, apodosis, bad, beyond recall, beyond remedy, bordering, borderline, boundary, bounding, bourn, branch, cable railway, catastrophe, caudal, ceasing, cessation, clause boundary, clause terminal, close juncture, closing, coastal, coda, cog railway, completing, completive, completory, concluding, conclusion, conclusive, conductor, connection, connector, consummation, consummative, control panel, coupling, crack of doom, crowning, culminating, culmination, cureless, curtain, curtains, deadly, death, decease, definitive, denouement, depot, despaired of, destination, destiny, determinant, determinative, determining, done for, doom, dying, effect, el, electric railway, elevated, elevated railway, embankment, end, end point, ending, endmost, envoi, epilogue, eschatology, eventual, expiration, expiring, extreme, facing death, falling terminal, farthest, fatal, fate, feeder, feeder line, final, final solution, final twitch, final words, finale, finality, finalizing, finis, finish, finishing, fringing, frontier, fulfilling, given up, goal, going, gone, gravity-operated railway, greatest, harbor, haven, hindmost, hopeless, horse railway, immedicable, in articulo mortis, in extremis, incapable of life, incorrigible, incurable, inoperable, irreclaimable, irrecoverable, irredeemable, irreformable, irremediable, irreparable, irretrievable, irreversible, irrevocable, izzard, junction, juncture, keyboard, lag, last, last breath, last gasp, last stop, last things, last trumpet, last words, latest, latter, latter end, lethal, light railroad, limbic, liminal, limit, limitable, limital, limiting, line, littoral, lost, low, main line, marginal, maximum, metro, module, monitor, monorail, moribund, mortal, near death, nonviable, omega, open juncture, past hope, past praying for, pause, payoff, period, peroration, polar, port, position, quietus, rack railway, rack-and-pinion railway, rail, rail line, railroad, railway, remediless, resolution, resting place, rimming, rising terminal, roadbed, roadway, ruined, sandhi, screen, sidetrack, siding, sinking, skirting, slipping, slipping away, station, stop, stoppage, stopping place, street railway, streetcar line, subway, swan song, switchback, tail, term, terminable, terminal point, terminating, termination, terminative, terminus, threshold, track, tram, tramline, trestle, trolley line, trunk, trunk line, tube, turnout, ultimate, underground, undone, unmitigable, unrelievable, unsalvable, unsalvageable, windup, wire, word boundary
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