moratorium

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

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

The city imposed a building moratorium in Natomas, and SAFCA scrambled to gain support from state and federal authorities to improve the region's defenses. Dale Kasler, sacbee, "Trump administration sends Sacramento $1.8 billion for flood protection," 5 July 2018 The Mexico Beach City Council imposed a three-month moratorium on building permits to settle on code changes. Arian Campo-flores, WSJ, "Flattened by Hurricane Michael, Florida Town Tries to Stave Off Big Development," 3 Apr. 2019 The levees around Natomas have been partially rebuilt, and although the basin hasn't yet reached 100-year protection, the levee work was enough to persuade the city to lift the moratorium in 2015. Dale Kasler, sacbee, "Trump administration sends Sacramento $1.8 billion for flood protection," 5 July 2018 The council could not lift the moratorium entirely, but could shorten the delay to 180 days. Karen Berkowitz, chicagotribune.com, "Highland Park expands appeal options for historic home teardown delays," 26 June 2018 Pakistan resumed military trials for militants and lifted a moratorium on the death penalty after a 2014 attack on a school in Peshawar that killed more than 150 people, mostly young students. Fox News, "Pakistan army chief confirms death sentences for 11 Taliban," 5 May 2018 The city lifted the moratorium after codifying guidelines for such operations. Bob Sandrick, cleveland.com, "Broadview Heights places temporary ban on short-term home rentals," 13 Feb. 2018 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

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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Dictionary Entries near moratorium

morass

morass ore

morat

moratorium

Moratuwa

Morava

Moravia

Statistics for moratorium

Last Updated

14 May 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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