sine qua non


si·ne qua non

noun \ˌsi-ni-ˌkwä-ˈnän, -ˈnōn also ˌsē-; also ˌsī-ni-ˌkwā-ˈnän\

: something that is absolutely needed

plural sine qua nons also sine qui·bus non \-ˌkwi-(ˌ)bs- also -ˌkwī-\

Full Definition of SINE QUA NON

:  something absolutely indispensable or essential <reliability is a sine qua non for success>

Examples of SINE QUA NON

  1. Patience is a sine qua non for this job.
  2. <an extensive grounding in mathematics is a sine qua non for a career in architecture>

Origin of SINE QUA NON

Late Latin, without which not
First Known Use: 1602


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