nil S3 /nɪl/ BrE AmE noun [uncountable]
[ Date: 1800-1900 ; Language: Latin ; Origin: nihil 'nothing' ]
1 . nothing SYN zero :
The new machine reduced labour costs to almost nil.
2 . British English the number zero, used in sports results:
Our team won by two goals to nil.
• • •
▪ zero the number 0. Also used when saying there is nothing at all:
A million is written as one followed by six zeros.
a temperature of zero degrees
Our chances of success are virtually zero.
▪ nil British English zero - used especially in the results of sports games:
United won the game three-nil.
In rural areas, employment opportunities are almost nil.
▪ nought British English spoken zero – used in calculations and figures:
It has increased by nought point seven five per cent (=0.75%) .
▪ O used to say the number 0 like the letter O:
The code for Oxford is 0 one eight six five (=01865) .