mid·​dle-class | \ ˌmi-dᵊl-ˈklas How to pronounce middle-class (audio) \

Definition of middle-class

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of or relating to the middle class especially : characterized by a high material standard of living, sexual morality, and respect for property

middle class


Definition of middle class (Entry 2 of 2)

: a class occupying a position between the upper class and the lower class especially : a fluid heterogeneous socioeconomic grouping composed principally of business and professional people, bureaucrats, and some farmers and skilled workers sharing common social characteristics and values

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Other Words from middle-class


middle-classness \ ˌmi-​dᵊl-​ˈklas-​nəs How to pronounce middle class (audio) \ noun

Examples of middle-class in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun These education regulations are bad for China’s middle class and its economy on the merits. Andrew Stuttaford, National Review, 30 July 2021 These education regulations are bad for China’s middle class and its economy on the merits. Joseph C. Sternberg, WSJ, 29 July 2021 Scanlon, who tried this year to enact state income tax relief for Connecticut’s poor and middle class — but was blocked by Lamont — said the surging revenues should only boost momentum for a tax relief debate in 2022. Keith M. Phaneuf, courant.com, 27 July 2021 Forty-five percent of Hispanics who grew up in poverty made it to the middle class or higher, comparable to the mobility rate for whites. David Brooks, Star Tribune, 23 July 2021 What is your administration doing to help prevent the economy from overheating, such as the poor and middle class are not hurt by the higher prices of goods in the long run? The Enquirer, 22 July 2021 But as in other metro areas nationwide, school integration led to white flight, and in later decades other factors including rising crime rates fueled a further exodus to the suburbs among Jackson’s white and Black middle class alike. Stephanie Hanes, The Christian Science Monitor, 21 July 2021 The March relief package made two changes to premium subsidies for all enrollees to address long-standing complaints that Obamacare plans are not affordable for many people, particularly the middle class. Tami Luhby, CNN, 14 July 2021 So this was a level of wealth that created not only a prosperous African American middle class, but also the services to cater to them: hotels, restaurants, furriers, jewelry stores, professional offices. Washington Post, 13 July 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'middle-class.' 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 middle-class


1836, in the meaning defined above


1745, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for middle-class

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The first known use of middle-class was in 1745

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Cite this Entry

“Middle-class.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/middle-class. Accessed 3 Aug. 2021.

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More Definitions for middle-class

middle class


English Language Learners Definition of middle class

: the social class that is between the upper class and the lower class and that includes mainly business and professional people, government officials, and skilled workers

middle class


Kids Definition of middle class

: a social class between that of the wealthy and the poor

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for middle-class


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