mi·​nor | \ ˈmī-nər How to pronounce minor (audio) \

Definition of minor

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : inferior in importance, size, or degree : comparatively unimportant a minor artist
2 : not having reached majority (see majority sense 2) He is the father of minor children.
3a : having half steps between the second and third, the fifth and sixth, and sometimes the seventh and eighth degrees minor scale
b : based on a minor scale minor key
c : less by a semitone than the corresponding major interval minor third
d : having a minor third above the root minor triad
4 : not serious or involving risk to life minor illness
5 : of or relating to an academic subject requiring fewer courses than a major his minor subjects for his M.A. were plant ecology and entomologyCurrent Biography



Definition of minor (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a person who is not yet old enough to have the rights of an adult
2 : a minor musical interval, scale, key, or mode
3a : a minor academic subject
b : a student taking a specified minor
4 : a determinant or matrix obtained from a given determinant or matrix by eliminating the row and column in which a given element lies
5 minors plural : minor league baseball used with the


minored; minoring; minors

Definition of minor (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to take courses in a minor subject

Synonyms & Antonyms for minor

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of minor in a Sentence

Adjective Her role in the project was minor. I'm not worried about minor details. The grant covered only a minor part of the cost. The delay will be minor. He suffered a minor heart attack. Noun families with children who are still minors The nightclub was shut down for selling alcohol to a minor. She majored in chemistry with a minor in biology.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Nagy was responsible for some critical game-management errors and the defense blew it, but all of that is minor in comparison with who ownership wants in charge of developing quarterback Justin Fields. Brad Biggs, chicagotribune.com, 23 Nov. 2021 Many were seemingly minor, like not having a record retention policy for audits, or not providing documents to support the conclusion made by criminalists in a case. San Diego Union-Tribune, 21 Nov. 2021 The fixes are typically minor, but recent revisions have been big enough to turn a substantial slump into a surprising surge. Washington Post, 15 Nov. 2021 Some were surprised the punishments were so minor, but columnist, Jared Bell explains how those penalties came to be. USA TODAY, 14 Nov. 2021 All were taken to Lawrence + Memorial Hospital in New London to be treated for injuries that police said were minor. Christine Dempsey, courant.com, 10 Nov. 2021 But these are extremely minor and consist mostly of measures any sane retailer will have imposed long ago. Timothy Noah, The New Republic, 9 Nov. 2021 Task force members said policy adjustments might be minor, but there is potential for infrastructure improvements. Ashton Eley, Arkansas Online, 7 Nov. 2021 But this critique is minor compared to the details the report does provide. Norbert Michel, Forbes, 5 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Czyzewski was arrested Monday and charged with first-degree manslaughter and risk of injury to a minor. Zach Murdock, courant.com, 25 Nov. 2021 After the video went viral, Mr. Lopez-Gatell responded that every vaccine that went to a minor through a lawsuit meant one less vaccine for adults that were more at risk. David Luhnow, WSJ, 23 Oct. 2021 If the bill passed, the state could cease public funding to any hospital, clinic or other facilities that provide gender transition services to a minor. Laura Hancock, cleveland, 19 Oct. 2021 Now, Lopez faces 22 charges, including child endangerment and conspiracy to provide firearms to a minor for the benefit of a street gang. Washington Post, 12 Oct. 2021 Maxwell Rovegno, Cameron Thomas and Nolan Valcik pleaded guilty to one count of furnishing liquor to a minor; they were not accused of supplying alcohol directly to Martinez. Andy Rose, CNN, 29 Sep. 2021 For example, your first high-profile move as mayor was refusing to swear in Sean Chu, a city councillor who was found guilty of professional misconduct based on inappropriate physical contact with a minor. Courtney Shea, refinery29.com, 2 Nov. 2021 The following year, Abedin files for divorce the day Weiner pleads guilty to exchanging illicit material with a minor. Washington Post, 1 Nov. 2021 Undergraduate degree in psychology from Indiana University Bloomington, with a minor in English. Emily Deletter, The Enquirer, 11 Oct. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Tens of thousands of times a year, hospitals charge enormously expensive trauma alert fees for injuries so minor the patient is never admitted. Jay Hancock, CNN, 16 July 2021 In a news release, the school said students in the fall will be able to pursue a Bachelor of Arts or Science degree in public health and may also minor in public health. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 16 Mar. 2021 The weather map on Monday shows somewhat active weather across the Great Lakes and into the Northeast, where areas of rain will mix will minor snow accumulations. Todd Nelson, Star Tribune, 28 Feb. 2021 Gardner, who is a strong catcher, plans to study business administration and hopes to minor in digital marketing. Randy Mcroberts, baltimoresun.com, 7 Dec. 2020 Undergraduates now have two ways to pursue ethnic studies: Students majoring in history and literature can focus on the subject, and students can minor in ethnicity, migration, rights. Kate Taylor, New York Times, 2 Jan. 2020 Jake hasn’t decided on a future career, but may minor in music in college. Mary Jane Brewer, cleveland, 17 Feb. 2020 Volunteer doctors and nurses, some of them migrants themselves, tend to minor illnesses and injuries from a rudimentary open-air clinic operated by Global Response Management, a small aid group. ExpressNews.com, 17 Nov. 2019 Zeigler, who minored in journalism at the University Alabama in the 1970s, administered the Facebook page. al, 1 Sep. 2019

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


1526, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1612, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1926, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for minor

Adjective and Noun

Latin, smaller, inferior; akin to Old High German minniro smaller, Latin minuere to lessen

Learn More About minor

Dictionary Entries Near minor

mino bird



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Statistics for minor

Last Updated

27 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Minor.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/minor. Accessed 7 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for minor



English Language Learners Definition of minor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not very important or valuable
: small in number, quantity, or extent
: not very serious : not causing much trouble or damage



English Language Learners Definition of minor (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who is not yet old enough to have the rights of an adult
: a second subject studied by a college or university student in addition to a main subject


mi·​nor | \ ˈmī-nər How to pronounce minor (audio) \

Kids Definition of minor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : not great in size, importance, or seriousness minor details a minor injury
2 : of or relating to a musical scale having the third tone lowered a half step



Kids Definition of minor (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person too young to have the full rights of an adult


mi·​nor | \ ˈmī-nər How to pronounce minor (audio) \

Medical Definition of minor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not serious or involving risk to life minor illness a minor operation — compare major



Medical Definition of minor (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person of either sex under the age of legal qualification for adult rights and responsibilities that has traditionally been 21 in the United States but is now 18 in many states or sometimes less under certain circumstances (as marriage or pregnancy)



Legal Definition of minor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who has not yet reached the age of majority — compare adult, juvenile, major



Legal Definition of minor (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : being less important or serious a minor official a minor offense
b : involving, relating to, or dealing with less important matters
2 : having the status of a minor minor children

More from Merriam-Webster on minor

Nglish: Translation of minor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of minor for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about minor


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