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bi- or bin- prefix

1. a. Two: biform. b. Both: binaural. c. Both sides, parts, or directions: biconcave.

2. a. Occurring at intervals of two: bicentennial. b. Usage Problem. Occurring twice during: biweekly.

3. a. Containing twice the proportion of a specified chemical element or group necessary for stability: bicarbonate. b. Containing two chemical atoms, radicals, or groups: biphenyl.


[Latin bis, bi-, twice, bīnī, two by two.]

Usage Note: Bimonthly and biweekly mean "once every two months" and "once every two weeks." For "twice a month" and "twice a week," the words semimonthly and semiweekly should be used. Since there is a great deal of confusion over the distinction, a writer is well advised to substitute expressions like every two months or twice a month where possible. However, used as nouns to denote "a publication that appears every two months," the words with bi- are unavoidable.