Definition of modicum
: a small portion : a limited quantity had only a modicum of mathematical skills
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Examples of modicum in a Sentence
only a modicum of skill is necessary to put the kit together
Recent Examples of modicum from the Web
The Marlins gathered a modicum of momentum heading into the All-Star break, during which Stanton and Marlins Park will be in the spotlight, trending upward albeit with a 41-46 record.
Al-Shabab offers a modicum of security in areas under its influence.
There is no simple path aside from a buyout that gets Anthony out of New York, but the Knicks brass should be able to conjure up a deal to acquire at least a modicum of young talent in exchange for Anthony.
Shortstop J.P. Crawford, his strong on-base skills notwithstanding, has not hit for even a modicum of power.
Anything where a woman feels a modicum of genuine pleasure tends to get categorized this way, even when the images overall are clearly geared toward straight men.
Bannon’s remarks were not just immature and unprofessional but also evidence of a White House where leading members cannot treat each other, let alone the larger public, with a modicum of decency.
Third, many hate anything that offers a modicum of power to the player.
Still, nearly everywhere, some modicum of nature can be found.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'modicum.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
The Origins of modicum Can Be Found in the Bathroom
What does "modicum" have to do with a toilet? It just so happens that "modicum" shares the same Latin parent as "commode," which is a synonym of "toilet." "Modicum" and "commode" ultimately derive from the Latin noun modus, which means "measure." "Modicum" has been a part of the English language since the 15th century. It descends from the Latin modicus ("moderate"), which is itself a descendant of "modus." (Logically enough, "modicum" refers to a small "measure" of something.) "Modus" really measures up as a Latin root - it also gave us "mode" (originally a kind of musical "measure"), "modal," "model," "modern," "modify," and "modulate." More distant relatives include "mete," "moderate," and "modest."
Origin and Etymology of modicum
Middle English, from Latin, neuter of modicus moderate, from modus measure
First Known Use: 15th centurySee Words from the same year
MODICUM Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of modicum for English Language Learners
: a small amount
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