min·​i·​mum | \ ˈmi-nə-məm How to pronounce minimum (audio) \
plural minima\ ˈmi-​nə-​mə How to pronounce minimum (audio) \ or minimums

Definition of minimum

1 : the least quantity assignable, admissible, or possible Keep expenses to a bare minimum. He was sentenced to a minimum of 10 years in prison.
2 : the least of a set of numbers specifically : the smallest value assumed by a continuous (see continuous sense 2) function defined on a closed (see closed sense 3b) interval
3a : the lowest degree or amount of variation (as of temperature) reached or recorded
b : the lowest speed allowed on a highway

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Other Words from minimum

minimum adjective

Examples of minimum in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web However, a 21% rate would only bring in an extra €100 billion—and a 15% minimum rate only half of that. Vivienne Walt, Fortune, 7 June 2021 Many big tech companies, including Apple Inc., Alphabet and Facebook have in recent years already reported effective tax rates roughly around the 15% minimum rate proposed by the G-7, according to securities filings. Richard Rubin, WSJ, 6 June 2021 During a briefing on Thursday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki argued that by raising the minimum rate, the 2017 tax bill would not be altered. Allison Pecorin, ABC News, 3 June 2021 Generally speaking, designing, releasing and approving a distribution plan for a sneaker takes place months ahead of time at the bare minimum. Mike D. Sykes Ii, USA TODAY, 3 June 2021 The biggest challenge was fighting against the urge to do the bare minimum to pass. al, 30 May 2021 So much of the last year and a half has revolved around survival and attaining the bare minimum. Jenn Harris Columnist, Los Angeles Times, 26 May 2021 Many business leaders consistently cite their commitment to human rights standards, while doing the bare minimum to enforce these standards. Michelle Gulino And Malaak Jamal, CNN, 25 May 2021 The box-office success of movies like Crazy Rich Asians has convinced some Hollywood executives to finally do the bare minimum and center more stories around the Asian experience. Adam Epstein, Quartz, 19 May 2021

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

1646, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for minimum

Latin, neuter of minimus smallest; akin to Latin minor smaller — more at minor

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Time Traveler for minimum

Time Traveler

The first known use of minimum was in 1646

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Statistics for minimum

Last Updated

11 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Minimum.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for minimum



English Language Learners Definition of minimum

: the lowest number or amount that is possible or allowed


min·​i·​mum | \ ˈmi-nə-məm How to pronounce minimum (audio) \
plural minimums or minima\ -​mə \

Kids Definition of minimum

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the lowest value : the least amount I need a minimum of two hours.



Kids Definition of minimum (Entry 2 of 2)

: being the least or lowest possible The minimum height for this ride is 42 inches.


min·​i·​mum | \ ˈmin-ə-məm How to pronounce minimum (audio) \
plural minima\ -​ə-​mə How to pronounce minimum (audio) \ or minimums

Medical Definition of minimum

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the least quantity assignable, admissible, or possible
2 : the lowest degree or amount of variation (as of temperature) reached or recorded



Medical Definition of minimum (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, or constituting a minimum meet the minimum psychiatric needs of the country— E. A. Strecker establishing minimum standards for medical educationCIBA Symposia


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