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 \ -​nəs How to pronounce middle-classness (audio) \ noun

Examples of middle-class in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The lower middle class in Western and Asian industrialized societies today has a higher living standard than the pope and the emperors of a few centuries back, in every dimension. Kelsey Piper, Vox, "Human history, in one chart," 8 Nov. 2018 With the middle class in China set to become larger than the entire U.S. population within a decade, Boeing projects that China will overtake the U.S. within 10 to 15 years as the largest domestic airplane passenger market in the world. Dominic Gates, The Seattle Times, "Boeing predicts strong growth in world’s airplane fleet, looking past near-term uncertainties," 16 July 2018 This is where unions like the UAW helped create the American middle class in the post-World War II era. John Gallagher, Detroit Free Press, "Why unions will survive Supreme Court anti-labor decision," 27 June 2018 To keep the legislation’s price-tag at $1.5 trillion, Republicans had to offset massive tax breaks for the rich by eliminating tax benefits prized by the (merely) affluent, the middle class – and, remarkably, Evangelical churches. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "The GOP Raised Taxes on Churches to Fund Its Giveaway to the Rich," 26 June 2018 Even amid the rise of a black middle class, Stonecrest is far from affluent. Patrik Jonsson, The Christian Science Monitor, "In wave of new cities, promise and pitfalls for black middle class," 20 June 2018 The commercial airline industry is working to keep up with rising demand, partly due to a growing middle class in China and India that increasingly is turning to air travel. Stephen Singer, courant.com, "Aerospace Industry Celebrates Manufacturing Boom, But Scrambles For Workers," 17 May 2018 Maybe there will be Hollywood movies about Asian Americans who aren’t crazy or rich, but sane and middle class. Alex Abad-santos, Vox, "Crazy Rich Asians’ crazy rich success could mean more stories about less crazy rich Asian-American people.," 21 Dec. 2018 Beer is not supposed to be nectar for the upper middle class, or for high-living millennials who can’t pay the rent after paying $35 for six bottles of some Dogfish Head experiment. Paul Daugherty, Cincinnati.com, "Paul Daugherty's Morning Line: Cincinnati Reds need the off day, and other MLB thoughts," 12 July 2018

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

The first known use of middle-class was in 1745

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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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Spanish Central: Translation of middle-class

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