min·​now | \ ˈmi-(ˌ)nō How to pronounce minnow (audio) \
plural minnows also minnow

Definition of minnow

1a : a small cyprinid, killifish, or topminnow
b : any of various small fish that are less than a designated size and are not game fish
2 : a live or artificial minnow used as bait

Examples of minnow in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In California rice fields, golden shiner minnows introduced by the project have reduced methane coming off fallowed rice paddies by 64 percent. Moises Velasquez-manoff, Wired, "The Fishy Fix to a Methane-Spewing Crop," 1 Apr. 2020 Bikers and hikers passed by on trails that cut through the wetlands and bosque and over the silvery minnow channel to the sandy banks of the Rio Grande. Andrea Sachs, Washington Post, "Albuquerque," 11 Dec. 2019 Wearing knee-high rubber boots, DeHart provided a tour Friday of Fernandez’s soggy $365,000 house as minnows swam around a Mercedes parked in the garage. Stephen Hudak, orlandosentinel.com, "Gotha lake threatens homes, Orange County does nothing, residents say," 30 Sep. 2019 Her teacher uses every subject from math to reading to remind the students that sharks are dangerous and a species that minnows should avoid at all costs. Denise Coffey, Courant Community, "Ashford, Eastford Students Delighted With "Nugget And Fang" Production," 12 June 2018 The faster money can get to these entrepreneurial minnows the better; preventing mass layoffs and bankruptcies will, in theory, help the American economy get going again more quickly when the outbreak has been contained. John Detrixhe, Quartz, "America’s smallest banks are being enlisted to rescue millions of American jobs," 1 Apr. 2020 Maddie McGarvey for The New York Times In the vast ocean of modern online commerce, Candis Jones, who designs and makes women’s jewelry, is a minnow. Steve Lohr, New York Times, "Tiny Digital Businesses Play Key Role in Local Economies, Study Says," 7 Apr. 2020 When panfish, such as crappie and perch, are on the feed, meaty minnows and shad are the target. T. Edward Nickens, Field & Stream, "The Best Flies for Catching Panfish," 12 Mar. 2020 Place this minnow about half-way down the water column, specifically targeting high-riding crappies. Outdoor Life, "5 Bluegill Facts That Will Help You Catch More Fish," 27 Jan. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for minnow

Middle English menawe; akin to Old English myne minnow, Old High German munewa, a kind of fish

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Time Traveler for minnow

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for minnow

Last Updated

28 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Minnow.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/minnow. Accessed 3 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for minnow


How to pronounce minnow (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of minnow

: a very small fish that is often used as bait to catch larger fish


min·​now | \ ˈmi-nō How to pronounce minnow (audio) \

Kids Definition of minnow

1 : a small freshwater fish (as a shiner) related to the carp
2 : a fish that looks like a true minnow

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More from Merriam-Webster on minnow

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with minnow

Spanish Central: Translation of minnow

Nglish: Translation of minnow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about minnow

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