noun, plural ter·mi·ni [tur-muh-nahy] /ˈtɜr məˌnaɪ/, ter·mi·nus·es.

  1. the end or extremity of anything.
  2. either end of a railroad line.
  3. British. the station or the town at the end of a railway or bus route.
  4. the point toward which anything tends; goal or end.
  5. a boundary or limit.
  6. a boundary post or stone.
  7. (initial capital letter) the ancient Roman god of boundaries and landmarks.
  8. term(def 10).


  1. the Roman god of boundaries

noun plural -ni (-naɪ) or -nuses

  1. the last or final part or point
  2. either end of a railway, bus route, etc, or a station or town at such a point
  3. a goal aimed for
  4. a boundary or boundary marker
  5. architect another name for term (def. 10)

n.1550s, “goal, end, final point,” from Latin terminus (plural termini) “end, boundary line,” from PIE root *ter-, base of words meaning “peg, post, boundary, marker goal” (cf. Sanskrit tarati “passes over, crosses over,” Hittite tarmaizzi “he limits,” Greek terma “boundary, end, limit”). In ancient Rome, Terminus was the name of the deity who presided over boundaries and landmarks, focus of the important Roman festival of Terminalia (held Feb. 23, the end of the old Roman year). Meaning “either end of a transportation line” is first recorded 1836.

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