quorum

noun
quo·​rum | \ ˈkwȯr-əm How to pronounce quorum (audio) \

Definition of quorum

1 : a select group
2 : the number (such as a majority) of officers or members of a body that when duly assembled is legally competent to transact business
3 : a Mormon body comprising those in the same grade of priesthood

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Quorum Has a Legal History

In Latin, quorum means "of whom" and is itself the genitive plural of qui, meaning "who." At one time, Latin quorum was used in the wording of the commissions issued to justices of the peace in England. In English, quorum initially referred to the number of justices of the peace who had to be present to constitute a legally sufficient bench. That sense is now rare, but it's not surprising that quorum has come to mean both "a select group" and "the minimum people required in order to conduct business."

Examples of quorum in a Sentence

We need five people to make a quorum.
Recent Examples on the Web The House adjourned early because of a lack of a quorum after the walkout. Emily Donaldson, Dallas News, 10 June 2021 Senate Bill 7 was stymied at the last minute, when Democrats in the Texas House walked out, depriving Republicans of a quorum. Sue Halpern, The New Yorker, 6 June 2021 The extraordinary move deprived the House of a quorum, killing the bill for now, at the cost of undermining the legislative process. Star Tribune, 2 June 2021 Democratic state lawmakers in the Lone Star State walked out of their chamber over the weekend to deprive their Republican colleagues of a quorum needed to pass a restrictive voting bill built on Trump's Big Lie of election fraud. Stephen Collinson, CNN, 2 June 2021 The quorum-breaking move — a decades-old maneuver favored by Democratic lawmakers — worked, in dramatic fashion. New York Times, 1 June 2021 The extraordinary move deprived the House of a quorum, killing the bill for now, at the cost of undermining the legislative process. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 31 May 2021 The Ohio Revised Code requires that public bodies must keep their meetings open to the public and that a member of a public body must be present in person to vote and for the purposes of determining whether a quorum is present. Robert Higgs, cleveland, 31 May 2021 When those maneuvers fell short, Democrats disappeared, then forced a vote that showed only 86 House members present, short of the 100 needed for a quorum. Editors, USA TODAY, 31 May 2021

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

1602, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for quorum

Middle English, quorum of justices of the peace, from Latin, of whom, genitive plural of qui who; from the wording of the commission formerly issued to justices of the peace

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Last Updated

14 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Quorum.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quorum. Accessed 17 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for quorum

quorum

noun

English Language Learners Definition of quorum

: the smallest number of people who must be present at a meeting in order for decisions to be made

quorum

noun
quo·​rum | \ ˈkwȯr-əm How to pronounce quorum (audio) \

Kids Definition of quorum

: the smallest number of people who must be present at a meeting in order for business to be carried on

quorum

noun
quo·​rum | \ ˈkwōr-əm How to pronounce quorum (audio) \

Legal Definition of quorum

: the number (as a majority) of members or officers that must be present to conduct business lacked a quorum at the meeting of shareholders

History and Etymology for quorum

Middle English, a select number of English justices of the peace formerly required to be present at sessions to constitute a lawful bench, from Latin, of whom, genitive plural of qui who; from the wording of the commission once issued to justices of the peace in England

More from Merriam-Webster on quorum

Nglish: Translation of quorum for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of quorum for Arabic Speakers

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