mo·​ment | \ ˈmō-mənt How to pronounce moment (audio) \

Definition of moment

1a : a minute portion or point of time : instant a moment of dreadful suspense— Graham Greene
b : a comparatively brief period of time moments of solitude
2a : present time at the moment she is at work on her fourth novelHoliday
b : a time of excellence or conspicuousness there's … some deliciously funny moments, but most of it is numbingly subtle— Jess Cagle
3 : importance in influence or effect decisions of moment must be made by our government— L. H. Evans
4 obsolete : a cause or motive of action
5 : a stage in historical or logical development a document of one moment in the history of thought and sensibility in the nineteenth century— T. S. Eliot
6a : tendency or measure of tendency to produce motion especially about a point or axis
b : the product of quantity (such as a force) and the distance to a particular axis or point
7a : the mean (see mean entry 4 sense 1b) of the nth powers of the deviations (see deviation sense b) of the observed values in a set of statistical data from a fixed value
b : the expected value of a power of the deviation (see deviation sense b) of a random variable from a fixed value

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Synonyms for moment


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importance, consequence, moment, weight, significance mean a quality or aspect having great worth or significance. importance implies a value judgment of the superior worth or influence of something or someone. a region with no cities of importance consequence generally implies importance because of probable or possible effects. the style you choose is of little consequence moment implies conspicuous or self-evident consequence. a decision of great moment weight implies a judgment of the immediate relative importance of something. the argument carried no weight with the judge significance implies a quality or character that should mark a thing as important but that is not self-evident and may or may not be recognized. the treaty's significance

Examples of moment in a Sentence

The sun was shining. Moments later, it began to rain. It was a moment before she realized what had happened. She stopped for a moment and peeked into the window. It should only take a moment to fix the problem. I'm very busy and I don't have a moment to spare. One moment it was sunny; the next it was pouring rain. The moment for us to act has arrived. War seemed unavoidable at that moment in history. She knew exactly the right moment to ask for a raise. We had an exciting vacation. There was never a dull moment.
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Recent Examples on the Web Here's what to know about the coronavirus, plus a timeline of the most critical moments: MAPS: Confirmed cases in the U.S. and worldwide, confirmed deaths in the U.S. and globally. Dennis Romero, NBC News, "'Parks and Recreation' returns for fundraiser special," 25 Apr. 2020 In a moment perhaps better consigned to the mists of television history, Bravo once produced a reality TV show called Work of Art: The Next Great Artist, which had its two seasons in 2010 and 2011. Kyle Chayka, The New Republic, "When Art Becomes Self-Help," 24 Apr. 2020 Both provided a couple of the more entertaining moments of the NFL Draft on Thursday. Mark Heim |, al, "NFL Draft: Watch Jerry Jeudy, Roger Goodell perform Drake’s ‘Toosie Slide’," 24 Apr. 2020 There's never a dull moment on the Drummond Ranch in Pawhuska, Oklahoma. Perri Ormont Blumberg, Southern Living, "Ree Drummond Shares Behind-the-Scenes Look of Daughter Alex Filming Her Food Network Show," 23 Apr. 2020 Water Perhaps the most emblematic moment of the crisis that afflicted U.S. waterways was the fire that erupted on the Cuyahoga River on June 22, 1969. Andrea Thompson, Scientific American, "How the Environment Has Changed since the First Earth Day 50 Years Ago," 22 Apr. 2020 This is a global moment of acknowledgment and respect for the power of nature and for so many of us — extreme challenges and sadness. Eric Todisco,, "Kacey Musgraves Hopes to ‘Lift Someone Else’s Spirit’ with Reimagined Version of ‘Oh, What a World’," 22 Apr. 2020 Over four weeks, the former first lady will read four of her favorite children's books to give kids a chance to practice their reading and parents a moment to catch their breath. Kelly Allen, House Beautiful, "Michelle Obama Is Hosting a Weekly Read-Along Children's Book Series," 22 Apr. 2020 Moving forward in this moment requires principles and priorities. Kit Krugman, Quartz at Work, "Covid-19 and the welcome collapse of “professionalism”," 21 Apr. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for moment

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin momentum movement, particle sufficient to turn the scales, moment, from movēre to move

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Time Traveler for moment

Time Traveler

The first known use of moment was in the 14th century

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Statistics for moment

Last Updated

27 Apr 2020

Cite this Entry

“Moment.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for moment


How to pronounce moment (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of moment

: a very short period of time
: a particular time : a precise point in time
: the present time


mo·​ment | \ ˈmō-mənt How to pronounce moment (audio) \

Kids Definition of moment

1 : a very brief time A shooting star lasts only a moment.
2 : present time I'm busy at the moment.
3 : importance We met to discuss a subject of great moment.

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