Definition of moiety
1a : one of two equal parts : halfb : one of two approximately equal parts … war, pestilence, and famine had consumed … the moiety of the human species. — Edward Gibbon
3 : one of two basic complementary tribal subdivisions the pueblo's population is divided into two halves or moieties; the Squash, or Winter People, and the Turquoise, or Summer People — Tom Bahti
moiety was our Word of the Day on 09/28/2011. Hear the podcast!
Examples of moiety in a sentence
the lot was split into two equal moieties
Did You Know?
Moiety is one of thousands of words that English speakers borrowed from French. The Anglo-French moitè (meaning "a half" or "part of something") comes from Late Latin medietat-, meaning "half." Around the same time that "moiety" was borrowed from Anglo-French, "medietat-" was also borrowed directly from Latin as mediety, a word which can also mean "a half." "Medietat-" comes from Latin medius (meaning "middle"), which has contributed to such English words as "medium," "meridian," and "milieu."
Origin and Etymology of moiety
Middle English moite, from Anglo-French meité, moité, from Late Latin medietat-, medietas, from Latin medius middle — more at mid
First Known Use: 15th century
Medical Definition of moiety
: one of the portions into which something is divided the hemoglobin molecule contains four heme moieties—Lionel Whitby
Seen and Heard
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