Epoch

Ep"och

(p"k or "pk; 277), n. [LL. epocha, Gr. 'epochh` check, stop, an epoch of a star, an historical epoch, fr. 'epe`chein to hold on, check; 'epi` upon + 'e`chein to have, hold; akin to Skr. sah to overpower, Goth. sigis victory, AS. sigor, sige, G. sieg: cf. F. poque. See Scheme.] 1. A fixed point of time, established in history by the occurrence of some grand or remarkable event; a point of time marked by an event of great subsequent influence; as, the epoch of the creation; the birth of Christ was the epoch which gave rise to the Christian era.
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In divers ages, . . . divers epochs of time were used.
Usher.
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Great epochs and crises in the kingdom of God.
Trench.
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The acquittal of the bishops was not the only event which makes the 30th of June, 1688, a great epoch in history.
Macaulay.
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Epochs mark the beginning of new historical periods, and dates are often numbered from them.
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2. A period of time, longer or shorter, remarkable for events of great subsequent influence; a memorable period; as, the epoch of maritime discovery, or of the Reformation. "So vast an epoch of time." F. Harrison.
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The influence of Chaucer continued to live even during the dreary interval which separates from one another two important epochs of our literary history.
A. W. Ward.
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3. (Geol.) A division of time characterized by the prevalence of similar conditions of the earth; commonly a minor division or part of a period.
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The long geological epoch which stored up the vast coal measures.
J. C. Shairp.
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4. (Astron.) (a) The date at which a planet or comet has a longitude or position. (b) An arbitrary fixed date, for which the elements used in computing the place of a planet, or other heavenly body, at any other date, are given; as, the epoch of Mars; lunar elements for the epoch March 1st, 1860.

Syn. -- Era; time; date; period; age. -- Epoch, Era. We speak of the era of the Reformation, when we think of it as a period, during which a new order of things prevailed; so also, the era of good feeling, etc. Had we been thinking of the time as marked by certain great events, or as a period in which great results were effected, we should have called the times when these events happened epochs, and the whole period an epoch.
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The capture of Constantinople is an epoch in the history of Mahometanism; but the flight of Mahomet is its era.
C. J. Smith.
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Ep"o*cha

(?), n. [L.] See Epoch. J. Adams.
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Sun 16th December 2018