Meaning of KILOMETER in English


noun Etymology: French kilomètre, from kilo- + mètre meter Date: 1810 a metric unit or length equal to 1000 meters, Usage: In North American speech ~ is most often pronounced with primary stress on the second syllable. This pronunciation is also heard frequently in British speech. Those who object to second syllable stress say that the first syllable should be stressed in accord with the stress patterns of centimeter, millimeter, etc. However, the pronunciation of ~ does not parallel that of other metric compounds. From 1828 to 1841 Noah Webster indicated only second syllable stress, and his successor added a first syllable stress variant in the first Merriam-Webster dictionary of 1847. Thus, both pronunciations are venerable. Most scientists use second syllable stress, although first syllable stress seems to occur with a higher rate of frequency among scientists than among nonscientists.

Merriam Webster. Explanatory English dictionary Merriam Webster.      Толковый словарь английского языка Мерриам-Уэбстер.