Denotation vs. Connotation


[uh-klok] /əˈklɒk/
of, by, or according to the clock (used in specifying the hour of the day):
It is now 4 o'clock.
according to a method for indicating relative position whereby a plane in space is considered to be numbered as a clock's face, with 12 o'clock considered as directly ahead in horizontal position or straight up in vertical position.
Origin of o'clock
1710-20; see o', clock1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for o'clock
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He asked me to remain in Washington and come to see him the next day at 10 o'clock, and not to fail.

  • They were off by six o'clock this morning, sir; most part at least.

    Vivian Grey Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli
  • Johnson did not arrive at Mayfield till 4.0 o'clock, then he instantly made his way to Mr. Earlsdown's bedroom.

    Daisy Ashford: Her Book Daisy Ashford
  • On the conclusion of the show, Fox was proceeding to look what o'clock it was.

  • It was nearly 10 o'clock when the city of Xenia was reached, but a large crowd greeted the tired travellers.

    Speeches of Benjamin Harrison Benjamin Harrison
British Dictionary definitions for o'clock


used after a number from one to twelve to indicate the hour of the day or night
used after a number to indicate direction or position relative to the observer, twelve o'clock being directly ahead or overhead and other positions being obtained by comparisons with a clock face
Word Origin
C18: abbreviation for of the clock
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 o'clock

c.1720, abbreviation of of the clock (1640s), from Middle English of the clokke (late 14c.). Use of clock hand positions to describe vector directions or angles is from late 18c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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