moratorium

noun
mor·​a·​to·​ri·​um | \ ˌmȯr-ə-ˈtȯr-ē-əm How to pronounce moratorium (audio) , ˌmär-\
plural moratoriums or moratoria\ -​ē-​ə How to pronounce moratoria (audio) \

Definition of moratorium

1a : a legally authorized period of delay in the performance of a legal obligation or the payment of a debt
b : a waiting period set by an authority
2 : a suspension of activity

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Examples of moratorium in a Sentence

In 2000, Illinois declared a moratorium on executions after 13 death-row inmates were exonerated. — Evan Thomas et al., Newsweek, 19 Nov. 2007 But one country's moratorium is another country's protectionism, and the U.S. is suspicious of Europe's actions. — Jeffrey Kluger, Time, 13 Sept. 1999 The striped bass are recovering strongly after a moratorium on catching them. — John P. Wiley, Jr., Smithsonian, November 1993 Her office was crammed with ungraded school papers, some of them dating back five years. She was far behind in her work—so far behind that she had declared a moratorium on school work until she could catch up on her grading. — Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., The Sirens of Titan, 1959 The treaty calls for a nuclear testing moratorium. the director of the blood bank called for a moratorium in donations until the surplus could be used up
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Recent Examples on the Web

Such concerns prompted county commissioners to reject an earlier solar project proposed for farmland and approve a moratorium for permits for all new ones. Hal Bernton, The Christian Science Monitor, "Solar panel proposal faces opposition in Washington State," 7 May 2018 That same year legislators in Albany passed a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, the process used to wring oil and gas out of underground rock formations. Robert Bryce, WSJ, "Gas Shortages Give New York an Early Taste of the Green New Deal," 15 Feb. 2019 Some of those same laws are at the center of the coal moratorium dispute. Matthew Brown, The Seattle Times, "States ask court to stop Trump from reviving US coal sales," 12 Dec. 2018 Waterton in October demanded an acquisition moratorium from Hudbay amid reports the company was in talks to buy Mantos Copper SA in a deal that could value the Chilean miner at up to $780 million. Patrick Thomas, WSJ, "Waterton Seeks to Replace Board, CEO at Canadian Miner Hudbay," 16 Jan. 2019 The bill would extend an existing moratorium on coal ash pond closures, except for ponds that have already had the ash excavated. Washington Post, "Virginia lawmakers finish 2018 session with no budget," 10 Mar. 2018 Hall, the film office director, said the cabinet's plan was to convince lawmakers to place a two-year moratorium on film incentives until the state was in better financial shape. Bailey Loosemore, The Courier-Journal, "Even Kentucky's film office can't justify losing millions to filmmakers," 17 May 2018 If that article fails, the meeting will take up a separate one placing a moratorium on marijuana businesses until June 30, 2019 to allow the town time to develop zoning rules on the subject. John Laidler, BostonGlobe.com, "Norton Town Meeting will consider funds for elementary school repairs," 10 May 2018 Washington Democrats and Republicans have made a very public effort to pass a bipartisan bill since Gov. Jay Inslee placed a moratorium on the state’s use of capital punishment in 2014. Phil Mccausland, NBC News, "In bipartisan trend, Washington state advances bill to abolish death penalty," 25 Feb. 2018

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

1875, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for moratorium

New Latin, from Late Latin, neuter of moratorius dilatory, from Latin morari to delay, from mora delay

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Moravia

Statistics for moratorium

Last Updated

19 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for moratorium

The first known use of moratorium was in 1875

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More Definitions for moratorium

moratorium

noun

English Language Learners Definition of moratorium

: a time when a particular activity is not allowed

moratorium

noun
mor·​a·​to·​ri·​um | \ ˌmȯr-ə-ˈtȯr-ē-əm How to pronounce moratorium (audio) \
plural moratoriums; plural moratoria

Legal Definition of moratorium

1a : an authorized period of delay in the performance of an obligation (as the paying of a debt)
b : a waiting period set by an authority
2 : a suspension of activity

History and Etymology for moratorium

New Latin, from Late Latin, neuter of moratorius dilatory, from morari to delay, from mora delay

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