Pronunciation: (ēr'u, er'u), [key]
1. a period of time marked by distinctive character, events, etc.: The use of steam for power marked the beginning of an era.
2. the period of time to which anything belongs or is to be assigned: She was born in the era of hansoms and gaslight.
3. a system of chronologic notation reckoned from a given date: The era of the Romans was based upon the time the city of Rome was founded.
4. a point of time from which succeeding years are numbered, as at the beginning of a system of chronology: Caesar died many years before our era.
5. a date or an event forming the beginning of any distinctive period: The year 1492 marks an era in world history.
6. Geol.a major division of geologic time composed of a number of periods. See table under geologic time.
1. Also,era Baseball.See earned run average.
2. Emergency Relief Administration.
3. Equal Rights Amendment: proposed 27th amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.