nominal

adjective
nom·​i·​nal | \ ˈnä-mə-nᵊl How to pronounce nominal (audio) , ˈnäm-nəl \

Definition of nominal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or being a noun or a word or expression taking a noun construction
2a : of, relating to, or constituting a name
b : bearing the name of a person
3a : existing or being something in name or form only nominal head of his party
b : of, being, or relating to a designated or theoretical size that may vary from the actual : approximate the pipe's nominal size
c : trifling, insignificant his involvement was nominal charged only nominal rent
4 of a rate of interest
a : equal to the annual rate of simple interest that would obtain if interest were not compounded when in fact it is compounded and paid for periods of less than a year
b : equal to the percentage by which a repaid loan exceeds the principal borrowed with no adjustment made for inflation
5 : being according to plan : satisfactory everything was nominal during the launch

nominal

noun
nom·​i·​nal | \ ˈnä-mə-nᵊl How to pronounce nominal (audio) , ˈnäm-nəl \

Definition of nominal (Entry 2 of 2)

: a word or word group functioning as a noun

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Other Words from nominal

Adjective

nominally adverb

Synonyms for nominal

Synonyms: Adjective

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Did You Know?

Something nominal exists only in name. So the nominal ruler in a constitutional monarchy is the king or queen, but the real power is in the hands of the elected prime minister. In the United Kingdom, the British monarch is also the nominal head of the Church of England; and those baptized in the Church who aren't really churchgoers might be called nominal Christians. A fee can be called nominal when it's small in comparison to the value of what it buys. So, for example, you might sell a friend a good piece of furniture for a nominal amount. And the charge for a doctor's visit might be a nominal $20, since most of the cost is covered by an insurance plan.

Examples of nominal in a Sentence

Adjective What gave it resonance was that she was reflecting—in a fun-house mirror—the thuggish behavior of her nominal betters. — Hendrik Hertzberg, New Yorker, 5 Dec. 2005 Instead they will decentralize and devolve power, and rely on the people over whom they have nominal authority to be self-organizing. — Francis Fukuyama, Atlantic, May 1999 Approaching his 68th birthday, Rockefeller had never imagined that his twilight years would be so eventful. His fortune had failed to purchase him even a poor man's mite of tranquillity. As nominal president of Standard Oil, he was in a bind, responsible for actions he had not approved. — Ron Chernow, Business Week, 18 May 1998 Each of the ten years of nominal peace saw plenty of bloodshed. — Theodore Roosevelt, The Winning of the West: 1769-1776, (1894) 1995 Her title of vice president had been nominal only. They charge a nominal fee for the service.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The greenhouse is open for individual in-store shopping, call-in or email orders for curbside pickup, or delivery service to your home for a nominal fee. Elaine Rewolinski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "A list of home and garden events for the Milwaukee area (Spring 2020 edition)," 30 Apr. 2020 Outside the family, there’s Choe Ryong Hae, who last year became president of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly, making him the nominal head of state. Steve Mollman, Quartz, "If Kim Jong Un dies, who leads North Korea?," 23 Apr. 2020 So nominal annual returns were actually pretty decent during this time, all things considered. Ben Carlson, Fortune, "These Charts Show Just How Awful the Economy Was When Paul Volcker Took Over as Fed Chairman," 9 Dec. 2019 Notary fees are usually nominal and start as low as $1 in some states. Kate Ashford, Health.com, "Your Estate Planning Checklist: How to Make a Will and Where to Find Expert Help," 22 Apr. 2020 United Russia, which holds more than half the seats in the current city council, did not formally nominate any candidates for this election, with aspirants tied to the party running as nominal independents. Washington Post, "Moscow votes in protest-shadowed election," 9 Sep. 2019 The Xinjiang chairman, the nominal head of the region, was always a Uighur, but the real power rested with the regional party secretary, who for decades was always Han. New York Times, "Her Uighur Parents Were Model Chinese Citizens. It Didn’t Matter.," 29 Jan. 2020 Individuals with only nominal earnings would receive a minimum $600 check. Nihal Krishan, Washington Examiner, "Two GOP senators say McConnell stimulus bill needs bigger checks for lower-income households," 20 Mar. 2020 Yes, virtually all banks charge a nominal fee to issue a cashier’s check (also known as a bank check or official check). cleveland, "Third Federal customer balks at cashier’s check fee for withdrawal: Money Matters," 8 Mar. 2020

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

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1904, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for nominal

Adjective and Noun

Middle English nominalle, from Medieval Latin nominalis, from Latin, of a name, from nomin-, nomen name — more at name

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Time Traveler for nominal

Time Traveler

The first known use of nominal was in the 15th century

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Statistics for nominal

Last Updated

18 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Nominal.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/nominal. Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for nominal

nominal

adjective
How to pronounce nominal (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of nominal

formal
: existing as something in name only : not actual or real
: very small in amount

nominal

adjective
nom·​i·​nal | \ ˈnä-mə-nᵊl How to pronounce nominal (audio) \

Kids Definition of nominal

1 : existing as something in name only He was the nominal head of the government.
2 : very small There's just a nominal fee.

Other Words from nominal

nominally adverb

nominal

adjective
nom·​i·​nal | \ ˈnä-mən-ᵊl How to pronounce nominal (audio) \

Legal Definition of nominal

1 : existing or being something in name or form but usually not in reality defenses…raised by the corporation as nominal defendant in a derivative suit— R. C. Clark
2 : being so small or trivial as to be a mere token charging a nominal fee
3 of a rate of interest
a : equal to the annual rate of simple interest that would obtain if interest were not compounded when in fact it is compounded and paid for periods of less than a year
b : equal to the percentage by which a repaid loan exceeds the principal borrowed with no adjustment made for inflation — compare effective sense 4

Other Words from nominal

nominally adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on nominal

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for nominal

Spanish Central: Translation of nominal

Nglish: Translation of nominal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of nominal for Arabic Speakers

Comments on nominal

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