de·​nom·​i·​na·​tion | \di-ˌnä-mə-ˈnā-shən \

Definition of denomination 

1 : an act of denominating the denomination of prices in U.S. dollars

2 : a value or size of a series of values or sizes metric denominations especially : the value of a particular coin or bill bills in $20 and $50 denominations

3 : name, designation especially : a general name for a category listed under the general denomination of gifts

4 : a religious organization whose congregations are united in their adherence to its beliefs and practices people from several different Christian denominations

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Other Words from denomination

denominational \ -​shnəl , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective
denominationally adverb

Examples of denomination in a Sentence

People from several different religious denominations participated in the event. Methodists, Baptists, and other Christian denominations. It's one of the more conservative denominations. The kidnappers asked for bills in small denominations. The gift certificates are available in $5 and $10 denominations. She spoke with people of many different political denominations.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, a Protestant, shown above in May, showers the Catholic church and other denominations with millions of dollars in direct subsidies. Drew Hinshaw, WSJ, "‘Hands Off!’; Clergy Balk as European Politicians Brandish the Crucifix," 9 Aug. 2018 The houses of worship joining the movement include a synagogue and many Christian denominations — Presbyterian, Baptist and Methodist among them. Gregory S. Schneider, Washington Post, "As politics of immigration heat up, Virginia churches join growing sanctuary movement," 5 July 2018 Boca Raton rabbis Jessica Brockman, Efrem Goldberg and David Englander each spoke on the issues of diversity and unity with the Knesset members in a joint meeting that also included other rabbis from all denominations. Marvin Glassman, Jewish Journal, "Knesset members visit with Palm Beach County Jewish leaders," 11 May 2018 Many of those involved in the effort are Sunni Muslim immigrants from South Asia, although other Muslim denominations and countries of origin also were represented at the sunny afternoon of speeches, music, food, and fellowship. Kevin Riordan,, "South Jersey Muslims build a foundation for unity and community," 23 Apr. 2018 Holding candles and singing hymns, religious leaders from different denominations prayed together Tuesday night in Lexington Park for the victims at Great Mills High School., "The Latest on the Maryland School Shooting," 20 Mar. 2018 The churches will seek out other Christian denominations that share their values on issues like climate change, as well as racial and economic justice, to join them, Antal said. John Hilliard,, "New England UCC churches look to organize progressive ‘Christian voice’," 16 June 2018 Many Protestant denominations similarly forbid women from taking up roles as pastors or preachers. Sarah Jones, The New Republic, "The Religious Right’s #MeToo Reckoning Is Coming," 30 May 2018 Court testimony disclosed that CSS also requires prospective foster families to provide letters from a member of the clergy of any denomination. Julia Terruso,, "Did city violate the religious freedom of Catholic Social Services when it froze its foster care contract?," 21 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'denomination.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of denomination

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for denomination

see denominate

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Statistics for denomination

Last Updated

13 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for denomination

The first known use of denomination was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for denomination



Financial Definition of denomination

What It Is

Usually associated with currency, a denomination is the value specified on a monetary instrument.

How It Works

Denomination values are graduated and usually divisible by some common denominator (hence, 'denomination'). For example, in addition to the $1 bill, denominations of U.S. paper money include $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100 notes, all divisible by 5.

Though denominations are generally discussed with regard to currency, financial instruments such as bonds are also generally issued in different denominations.

Why It Matters

Where currency is concerned, denominations provide the bearer with a range of values depending on how much money he or she will need to spend. In the case of financial instruments such as bonds, denominations provide investors with a range of values based on what they are able to afford.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of denomination

: a religious group

: the value that a particular coin or bill has

: an amount of money that something is worth


de·​nom·​i·​na·​tion | \di-ˌnä-mə-ˈnā-shən \

Kids Definition of denomination

1 : a value in a series of values (as of money) She asked for her money in small denominations.

2 : a name especially for a class of things

3 : a religious group a Christian denomination

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Comments on denomination

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by force of circumstances

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