fullness of time

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fullness of time (uncountable)

  1. The time which is appropriate for something; a time that is not too soon.
    • [1611, The Holy Bible, [] (King James Version), London: [] Robert Barker, [], OCLC 964384981, Galatians 4:4–5:
      But when the fulnes of the time was come, God ſent foorth his Sonne made of a woman, made vnder the Law, / To redeeme them that were vnder the Law, that we might receiue the adoption of ſonnes.]
    • 1650, Thomas Browne, “Concerning the Beginning of the World, [...]”, in Pseudodoxia Epidemica: [], 2nd edition, London: Printed by A. Miller, for Edw[ard] Dod and Nath[aniel] Ekins, [], OCLC 152706203, 6th book, page 241:
      In what year therefore ſoever, either from the deſtruction of the Temple, from the reedifying thereof, from the floud, or from the Creation he [Jesus Christ] appeared, certain it is, that in the fulneſſe of time he came.
    • 1670, Thomas Price, The Mystery of Mysteries Revealed in the Fullnesse of Time. [], London: Printed by T. R. and T. D. for William Saywell [], page 25:
      This was the fullneſs of Time, in which all the Propheſies (concerning the Meſſias) were exactly fulfilled. Nothing was ever foretold of Jeſus Chriſt, which was not exactly performed in the fullneſs of Time.
    • 1751, Robert, Lord Bishop of Clogher [i.e., Robert Clayton], “An Impartial Enquiry into the Time of the Coming of the Messiah: In a Second Letter from Robert, Lord Bishop of Clogher, to an Eminent Jew”, in An Enquiry into the Time of the Coming of the Messiah, and the Restoration of the Jews: In a Letter from Robert, Lord Bishop of Clogher, to an Eminent Jew, London: Printed for J. Brindley, [], OCLC 30122851, page 80:
      And in this exalted State he [Jesus Christ] ſhall appear again upon the Earth, and ſhew himſelf in the fullneſs of Time to thoſe who are then alive, for their Conviction and Converſion; [...]
    • 1809 November 1, Henry Woodthorpe [Sr.], “City Jubilee Address to the King”, in William Cobbett, editor, Cobbett’s Weekly Political Register, volume XVI, number 18, London: Printed by T[homas] C[urson] Hansard, []; published by Richard Bagshaw, []; [et al.], published 4 November 1809, OCLC 1013264609, column 692:
      Believe, Sire, that it is the warmest wish and most fervent prayer of your Majesty's Citizens of London, that Providence may long continue to this nation so distinguishing a mark of divine favour, and that in the fullness of time, when your Majesty shall be called from your earthly to a celestial crown, the memory and example of so beloved a Sovereign may secure to a grateful people the imitation of your Majesty's virtues, in the successors of your Royal House, till time shall be no more.
    • 1903, G[opal] K[rishna] Gokhale, “Mr. Mahadev Govinda Ranade”, in Speeches of the Honourable Mr. G. K. Gokhale, [], Madras: G[anapathi] A[graharam] Natesan & Co., [], published [1908], OCLC 559375551, page 603:
      I will tell you [...] what message he [Mahadev Govind Ranade] has left behind for the rising generations of his country, so that the harvest for which he laboured may be reaped and not lost in the fullness of time.
    • 1904 November 10, Henry James, chapter II, in The Golden Bowl, volume I, New York, N.Y.: Charles Scribner’s Sons, OCLC 547842, book first (The Prince), part first, page 36:
      One of these gaps in Mrs. Assingham's completeness was her want of children; the other was her want of wealth. It was wonderful how little either, in the fulness of time, came to show; [...]
    • 1906 April, O. Henry [pseudonym; William Sydney Porter], “From the Cabby’s Seat”, in The Four Million, New York, N.Y.: McClure, Phillips & Co, OCLC 1399985, page 165:
      In the fulness of time there was an eruption of the merry-makers to the sidewalk. The uninvited guests enveloped and permeated them, and upon the night air rose joyous cries, congratulations, laughter and unclassified noises born of McGary's oblations to the hymeneal scene.
    • 1958, James Blish, “Object 4001 – Alephnull”, in The Triumph of Time: A Cities in Flight Novel (Avon; S221), New York, N.Y.: Avon, OCLC 122569399; republished London: Gateway, Hachette UK, 2011, →ISBN:
      In the fullness of time, the love which existed between them had been spoken and acknowledged, and they were now a couple, with all the delights and the responsibilities which coupling provides and demands; but somehow, nobody had noticed.
    • 1966, Anne Dolan, quoting Éamon de Valera (allegedly), “‘History Will Record the Greatness of Collins’? Michael Collins and the Politics of Memory”, in Commemorating the Irish Civil War: History and Memory, 1923–2000, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire: Cambridge University Press, published 2003, →ISBN, page 87:
      It's my considered opinion that in the fullness of time history will record the greatness of [Michael] Collins and it will be recorded at my expense.
    • 1978, Franz Brentano; Rolf George and ‎Roderick M[ilton] Chisholm, editors and translators, Aristotle and His World View, Berkeley, Calif.; London: University of California Press, →ISBN, page 115:
      If the entry of nous into the fetus is the moment of the latter's completion, then the appearance of the human race in history may properly be envisaged as the fullness of time.
    • 2006, Marita Grudzen; James P. Oberle, “Discovering the Spirit in the Rhythm of Time”, in Susan H. McFadden and ‎Robert C. Atchley, editors, Aging and the Meaning of Time: A Multidisciplinary Exploration, New York, N.Y.: Springer Publishing Company, →ISBN, part III (Effects of Religious Beliefs and Spiritual Practices on Meanings of Time and Aging), page 174:
      The many references to kairotic time in the New Testament convey the notion of the fullness of time. Thus, many passages state that when the time was ripe, God acted. Alternatively, when time is complete, there is a fullness of time.

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