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  1. #1
    inase's Avatar
    inase is offline Member
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    biyearly - biannually or biennially

    Dictionaries say that "biyearly" means either "biannually (twice a year)" or "biennially (every two years)," probably depending on the context. In your everyday life, which meaning do you usually imply without no clear context?

    I have no clear evidence but it seems that Americans usually mean "twice a week" by "biweekly."

    Inase

  2. #2
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    Re: biyearly - biannually or biennially

    Biennially means once every two years. Bianually means twice a year. Biyearly I have never run across in my seventy years. Context is your only hope of guessing what the benighted author meant.

    Biweekly means once every two weeks. Semi-weekly would in theory mean twice a week but is not in actual use, presumably because a week consists of an odd number of days.

  3. #3
    andrewg927 is offline Senior Member
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    Re: biyearly - biannually or biennially

    I have seen "bicentennial" but I haven't seen "biyearly" either. That doesn't mean it can't be used. I think readers would still understand.
    Last edited by andrewg927; 20-Jun-2017 at 18:25. Reason: fixing typo

  4. #4
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: biyearly - biannually or biennially

    I will use them in restricted contexts, though biyearly is new to me, The problem is that they are very widely misunderstood, like a twofold increase, where there are differences in the way people calculate them.

  5. #5
    SoothingDave is offline VIP Member
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    Re: biyearly - biannually or biennially

    To me, "biweekly" would be every two weeks. Same with "biannually" being every other year. I would use "semi-annual" to refer to a twice-yearly event.

    Best to be explicit and not assume.

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