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[awl-muh-nak] /ˈɔl məˌnæk/
an annual publication containing a calendar for the coming year, the times of such events and phenomena as anniversaries, sunrises and sunsets, phases of the moon, tides, etc., and other statistical information and related topics.
a publication containing astronomical or meteorological information, usually including future positions of celestial objects, star magnitudes, and culmination dates of constellations.
an annual reference book of useful and interesting facts relating to countries of the world, sports, entertainment, etc.
Origin of almanac
1350-1400; Middle English almenak < Medieval Latin almanach < Spanish Arabic al the + manākh calendar < ? Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for almanac
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The almanac called it winter, distinctly enough, but the weather was a compromise between spring and summer.

    Roughing It Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
  • In 1788 a ballad in an almanac brought the custom into popular ridicule.

    Folkways William Graham Sumner
  • He took the almanac from Timothy Turtle and they both sat down.

    The Tale of Timothy Turtle Arthur Scott Bailey
  • Bowditch used the 1916 almanac, whereas we are working from the 1919 almanac.

    Lectures in Navigation Ernest Gallaudet Draper
  • If you will come to me after dinner with an almanac we will arrange it.

    The Duke's Children Anthony Trollope
  • The last fact to know at this time about the almanac is found on pages 94-95.

    Lectures in Navigation Ernest Gallaudet Draper
  • On that solitary string hangs everything from Armageddon to an almanac, from a successful revolution to a return ticket.

  • For the session of 1872-3 the almanac does not differentiate.

British Dictionary definitions for almanac


a yearly calendar giving statistical information on events and phenomena, such as the phases of the moon, times of sunrise and sunset, tides, anniversaries, etc Also (archaic) almanack
Word Origin
C14: from Medieval Latin almanachus, perhaps from Late Greek almenikhiaka
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for almanac

late 14c., attested in Anglo-Latin from mid-13c., via Old French almanach or Medieval Latin almanachus, of uncertain origin. It is sometimes said to be from a Spanish-Arabic al-manakh "calendar, almanac," but possibly ultimately from Late Greek almenichiakon "calendar," which is said to be of Coptic origin.

This word has been the subject of much speculation. Originally a book of permanent tables of astronomical data; one-year versions, combined with ecclesiastical calendars, date from 16c.; "astrological and weather predictions appear in 16-17th c.; the 'useful statistics' are a modern feature" [OED].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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