con·ti·nent 1 (kŏn′tə-nənt)
1. One of the principal land masses of the earth, usually regarded as including Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America.
2. Continent The mainland of Europe. Used with the.
[Latin (terra) continēns, continent-, continuous (land), present participle of continēre, to hold together; see contain.]
con·ti·nent 2 (kŏn′tə-nənt)
[Middle English, from Latin continēns, present participle of continēre, to restrain; see contain.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. (Physical Geography) one of the earth's large land masses (Asia, Australia, Africa, Europe, North and South America, and Antarctica)
2. (Physical Geography) that part of the earth's crust that rises above the oceans and is composed of sialic rocks. Including the continental shelves, the continents occupy 30 per cent of the earth's surface
(Physical Geography) obsolete
a. mainland as opposed to islands
b. a continuous extent of land
[C16: from the Latin phrase terra continens continuous land, from continēre; see contain]
1. (Medicine) able to control urination and defecation
2. exercising self-restraint, esp from sexual activity; chaste
[C14: from Latin continent-, present participle of continēre; see contain]
ˈcontinence, ˈcontinency n
(Placename) the Continent the mainland of Europe as distinguished from the British Isles
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
con•ti•nent (ˈkɒn tn ənt)
1. one of the main landmasses of the globe, usu. reckoned as seven in number (Europe, Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Australia, and Antarctica).
2. the mainland, as distinguished from islands or peninsulas.
3. the Continent, the mainland of Europe, as distinguished from the British Isles.
4. a continuous tract, as of land.
5. Archaic. something that serves as a container or boundary. adj.
6. characterized by or exercising self-restraint, esp. in sexual activity.
7. able to control urinary and fecal discharge.
8. Obs. containing; being a container.
9. Obs. restraining or restrictive.
[1350–1400; Middle English < Latin continent-,
s. of continēns,
present participle of continēre
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
One of the seven great landmasses of the Earth. The continents are Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America.
The American Heritage® Student Science Dictionary, Second Edition. Copyright © 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
A continent is a very large area of land surrounded or almost surrounded by sea. A continent usually consists of several countries. Africa and Asia are continents.
They travelled across the South American continent.
2. 'the Continent'
When people talk about the Continent, they mean the mainland of Europe, especially central and southern Europe.
On the Continent, the tradition has been quite different.
Sea traffic between the United Kingdom and the Continent was halted.
Collins COBUILD English Usage © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 2004, 2011, 2012
One of the world’s great unbroken land masses.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited