mi·​nor | \ ˈmī-nər How to pronounce minor (audio) \

Definition of minor

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : inferior in importance, size, or degree : comparatively unimportant a minor artist
2 : not having reached majority (see majority sense 2) He is the father of minor children.
3a : having half steps between the second and third, the fifth and sixth, and sometimes the seventh and eighth degrees minor scale
b : based on a minor scale minor key
c : less by a semitone than the corresponding major interval minor third
d : having a minor third above the root minor triad
4 : not serious or involving risk to life minor illness
5 : of or relating to an academic subject requiring fewer courses than a major his minor subjects for his M.A. were plant ecology and entomologyCurrent Biography



Definition of minor (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a person who is not yet old enough to have the rights of an adult
2 : a minor musical interval, scale, key, or mode
3a : a minor academic subject
b : a student taking a specified minor
4 : a determinant or matrix obtained from a given determinant or matrix by eliminating the row and column in which a given element lies
5 minors plural : minor league baseball used with the


minored; minoring; minors

Definition of minor (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to take courses in a minor subject

Synonyms & Antonyms for minor

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of minor in a Sentence

Adjective Her role in the project was minor. I'm not worried about minor details. The grant covered only a minor part of the cost. The delay will be minor. He suffered a minor heart attack. Noun families with children who are still minors The nightclub was shut down for selling alcohol to a minor. She majored in chemistry with a minor in biology. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Safran has made only minor aesthetic adjustments to the headrest design. CNN, 22 June 2022 He gets injured in a minor accident, and his misery and paranoia increase when two of the other hikers abandon him without warning. Francine Prose, Harper’s Magazine , 22 June 2022 However, while consuming cannabis flowers by smoking a joint has greater effects, using pipes and vaporizers has a minor impact on the feeling of relief from fatigue. Dario Sabaghi, Forbes, 22 June 2022 Two other people suffered from minor burns and smoke inhalation, but both have been discharged, Hammond added. Remington Miller, Arkansas Online, 22 June 2022 Officials initially said that the base in Syria had sustained rocket fire, injuring four service members who were treated for minor wounds and possible traumatic brain injuries. Doha Madani, NBC News, 22 June 2022 About half of farmworkers report living with minor children, according to the most recent National Agricultural Workers Survey, compared to a quarter of adults overall. Laura Reiley, Washington Post, 22 June 2022 Some Chinese e-commerce companies have found a way to outsource an unpleasant but critical task: the settling of minor disputes, usually involving fraud, damage or refund claims between sellers and buyers. Sha Hua, WSJ, 21 June 2022 In addition to the hazing charges, the two University of Missouri-Columbia students are facing misdemeanor counts of supplying liquor to a minor or intoxicated person, PEOPLE confirms. Chris Harris, PEOPLE.com, 21 June 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun According to a new complaint, the actor is being accused of grooming a minor from the age of 12. Sydney Bucksbaum, EW.com, 8 June 2022 Kucherov was given a four-minute double minor for high sticking. New York Times, 5 June 2022 Officials declined to say if the child was under 1 year old and too young to be vaccinated or an older minor. Jenna Portnoy, Washington Post, 18 May 2022 The Hurricanes scored the game’s first goal with 84 seconds left in the first period, then added a second 3:14 into the second period, just 12 seconds after the Bruins had killed off a 4-minute double-minor on Taylor Hall for high sticking. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, 15 May 2022 Dean is charged with violation of nonparental custody order and harboring a minor. Audrey Conklin, Fox News, 13 May 2022 Today, Beggs is a psychology major with a business minor and plans to get a doctorate degree in innovational psychology. Erik Matuszewski, Forbes, 13 May 2022 Frock is charged with four counts of inducing a minor to produce child pornography and eight counts of possession of child pornography, among numerous other charges, according to a news release from the sheriff’s office. Cameron Goodnight, Baltimore Sun, 10 May 2022 Patrice Bergeron had a goal and two assists and drew a high-sticking double minor from Sebastian Aho at the end of the second period that gave the Bruins a 5-on-3 and left their captain with a black eye and several stitches. Jimmy Golen, Hartford Courant, 8 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Tens of thousands of times a year, hospitals charge enormously expensive trauma alert fees for injuries so minor the patient is never admitted. Jay Hancock, CNN, 16 July 2021 In a news release, the school said students in the fall will be able to pursue a Bachelor of Arts or Science degree in public health and may also minor in public health. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 16 Mar. 2021 The weather map on Monday shows somewhat active weather across the Great Lakes and into the Northeast, where areas of rain will mix will minor snow accumulations. Todd Nelson, Star Tribune, 28 Feb. 2021 Gardner, who is a strong catcher, plans to study business administration and hopes to minor in digital marketing. Randy Mcroberts, baltimoresun.com, 7 Dec. 2020 Undergraduates now have two ways to pursue ethnic studies: Students majoring in history and literature can focus on the subject, and students can minor in ethnicity, migration, rights. Kate Taylor, New York Times, 2 Jan. 2020 Jake hasn’t decided on a future career, but may minor in music in college. Mary Jane Brewer, cleveland, 17 Feb. 2020 Volunteer doctors and nurses, some of them migrants themselves, tend to minor illnesses and injuries from a rudimentary open-air clinic operated by Global Response Management, a small aid group. ExpressNews.com, 17 Nov. 2019 Zeigler, who minored in journalism at the University Alabama in the 1970s, administered the Facebook page. al, 1 Sep. 2019 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'minor.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of minor


1526, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1612, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1926, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for minor

Adjective and Noun

Latin, smaller, inferior; akin to Old High German minniro smaller, Latin minuere to lessen

Learn More About minor

Dictionary Entries Near minor

mino bird



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Statistics for minor

Last Updated

23 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Minor.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/minor. Accessed 27 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for minor


mi·​nor | \ ˈmī-nər How to pronounce minor (audio) \

Kids Definition of minor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : not great in size, importance, or seriousness minor details a minor injury
2 : of or relating to a musical scale having the third tone lowered a half step



Kids Definition of minor (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person too young to have the full rights of an adult


mi·​nor | \ ˈmī-nər How to pronounce minor (audio) \

Medical Definition of minor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not serious or involving risk to life minor illness a minor operation — compare major



Medical Definition of minor (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person of either sex under the age of legal qualification for adult rights and responsibilities that has traditionally been 21 in the United States but is now 18 in many states or sometimes less under certain circumstances (as marriage or pregnancy)



Legal Definition of minor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who has not yet reached the age of majority — compare adult, juvenile, major



Legal Definition of minor (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : being less important or serious a minor official a minor offense
b : involving, relating to, or dealing with less important matters
2 : having the status of a minor minor children

More from Merriam-Webster on minor

Nglish: Translation of minor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of minor for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about minor


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