1

major

adjective ma·jor \ ˈmā-jər \
Updated on: 7 Dec 2017

Definition of major

1 : greater in dignity, rank, importance, or interest
  • one of the major poets
2 : greater in number, quantity, or extent
  • the major part of his work
3 : of full legal age
  • major children
4 a : notable or conspicuous in effect or scope : considerable
  • a major improvement
b : prominent or significant in size, amount, or degree
  • earned some major cash
5 : involving grave risk : serious
  • a major illness
6 : of or relating to a subject of academic study chosen as a field of specialization
  • The student's major field is geology.
7 a : having half steps between the third and fourth and the seventh and eighth degrees
  • major scale
b : based on a major scale
  • major key
c : equivalent to the distance between the keynote and another tone (except the fourth and fifth) of a major scale
  • major third
d : having a major third above the root
  • major triad

Examples of major in a Sentence

  1. He's one of the major figures in 19th-century U.S. history.

  2. Researchers have announced a major advance in the treatment of cancer.

  3. She played a major role in the negotiations.

  4. No major changes are expected.

  5. The grant covered a major part of the cost.

  6. Butter is one of the major ingredients in the recipe.

  7. None of his health problems are major.

  8. He suffered a major heart attack.

Recent Examples of major from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of major

Middle English maiour, from Latin major, comparative of magnus great, large — more at much


2

major

noun

Definition of major

1 : a person who has attained majority
2 a : one that is superior in rank, importance, size, or performance
  • economic power of the oil majors
b : a major musical interval, scale, key, or mode
3 : a commissioned officer in the army, air force, or marine corps ranking above a captain and below a lieutenant colonel
4 a : an academic subject chosen as a field of specialization
b : a student specializing in such a field
  • a history major
5 majors plural : major league baseball used with the
6 : any of several high-level tournaments in professional golf

Examples of major in a Sentence

  1. He chose history as his major and French as his minor.

  2. What was your major in college?

  3. In college, he was a history major.

  4. a club for physics majors

Recent Examples of major from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of major

see 1major


3

major

verb

Definition of major

intransitive verb
: to pursue an academic major
  • majored in English

Recent Examples of major from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of major

see 1major


Major

biographical name Ma·jor \ ˈmā-jər \

Definition of Major

Sir John 1943–     British prime minister (1990–97)


MAJOR Defined for English Language Learners

major

adjective

Definition of major for English Language Learners

  • : very important

  • : large in number, amount, or extent

  • : very serious or bad


major

noun

Definition of major for English Language Learners

  • : a military officer in the army, air force, or marines who ranks above a captain

  • : the main subject studied by a college or university student

  • : a student who has a specified main subject of study


MAJOR Defined for Kids

1

major

adjective ma·jor \ ˈmā-jər \

Definition of major for Students

1 : great or greater in number, quantity, rank, or importance
  • A new car is a major expense.
2 : of or relating to a musical scale of eight notes with half steps between the third and fourth and between the seventh and eighth notes and with whole steps between all the others

2

major

noun

Definition of major for Students

: a commissioned officer in the army, air force, or marine corps ranking above a captain

Medical Dictionary

major

adjective ma·jor \ ˈmā-jər \

medical Definition of major

: involving grave risk : serious
  • a major illness
  • a major surgical procedure
— compare minor

Law Dictionary

major

noun ma·jor

legal Definition of major

: a person who has attained majority — compare minor


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