Meaning of onset

on•set

Pronunciation: (on'set", ôn'-), [key]
— n.
  1. a beginning or start: the onset of winter.
  2. an assault or attack: an onset of the enemy.
  3. the segment of a syllable preceding the nucleus, as the gr in great. Cf.(def. 5),(def. 14).
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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