min·​ute | \ ˈmi-nət How to pronounce minute (audio) \

Essential Meaning of minute

1 : a unit of time equal to 60 seconds : one 60th of an hour Bake the cake for 25-30 minutes. We waited for several minutes, but no one came to the door. He can run a six-minute mile. [=he can run a mile in six minutes]
2 : a brief period of time : moment I saw him a minute ago. Dinner will be ready in just a few minutes. See More ExamplesOne minute it was sunny, the next it was pouring rain. Could I have a minute of your time? = Do you have a minute? = Could I speak to you for a minute? [=could I speak to you briefly?] I'm coming, just give me a minute. [=wait for me] It was an excellent show. I enjoyed every minute of it. [=I enjoyed all of it] I'll explain that in a minute. [=shortly, soon]Hide
3 : the distance that can be traveled in a minute My house is just a few minutes from here.

Full Definition of minute

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : the 60th part of an hour of time : 60 seconds
b : the 60th part of a degree of angular measure Its latitude is 41 degrees 55 minute north.
2 : the distance one can traverse in a minute Five minutes down the road is a gas station.
3 : a short space of time : moment Dinner will be ready in just a few minutes.
4a : a brief note (as of summary or recommendation) He received a minute of instructions.
b : memorandum, draft sent the president a minute explaining the problem
c minutes plural : the official record of the proceedings of a meeting The secretary read the minutes of the previous meeting.


mi·​nute | \ mī-ˈnüt How to pronounce minute (audio) , mə-, -ˈnyüt \
minuter; minutest

Definition of minute (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : very small : infinitesimal
2 : of small importance : trifling
3 : marked by close attention to details


min·​ute | \ ˈmi-nət How to pronounce minute (audio) \
minuted; minuting

Definition of minute (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

: to make notes or a brief summary of

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Other Words from minute


minuteness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for minute


small, little, diminutive, minute, tiny, miniature mean noticeably below average in size. small and little are often interchangeable, but small applies more to relative size determined by capacity, value, number. a relatively small backyard little is more absolute in implication often carrying the idea of petiteness, pettiness, insignificance, or immaturity. your pathetic little smile diminutive implies abnormal smallness. diminutive bonsai plants minute implies extreme smallness. a minute amount of caffeine in the soda tiny is an informal equivalent to minute. tiny cracks formed in the painting miniature applies to an exactly proportioned reproduction on a very small scale. a dollhouse with miniature furnishings

circumstantial, minute, particular, detailed mean dealing with a matter fully and usually point by point. circumstantial implies fullness of detail that fixes something described in time and space. a circumstantial account of our visit minute implies close and searching attention to the smallest details. a minute examination of a fossil particular implies a precise attention to every detail. a particular description of the scene of the crime detailed stresses abundance or completeness of detail. a detailed analysis of the event

Examples of minute in a Sentence

Noun Bake the cake for 25–30 minutes. We waited for several minutes, but no one came to the door. I saw him a minute ago. Dinner will be ready in just a few minutes. One minute it was sunny, the next it was pouring rain. My house is just a few minutes from here. The secretary read the minutes of the last meeting. Adjective There were minute particles of dust in the air. The test detected minute amounts of contamination. The equipment is able to detect the minutest errors. She told him what happened in minute detail. a minute examination of the evidence
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Tennessee's own cheerleaders left the field for the final minute to avoid the debris as did the band, while Ole Miss stepped onto the field to create space between the team and the stands. Nick Gray, USA TODAY, 18 Oct. 2021 Lindsey Horan’s goal in the 43rd minute stood up as the winner. oregonlive, 18 Oct. 2021 With the game decided, Kentucky (6-1, 4-1) drove to a first down at the Georgia 1 in the final minute. Paul Newberry, ajc, 17 Oct. 2021 Zardes, off an entry pass from Santos, flicked in a header from the center of the area to open the scoring in the 39th minute. sun-sentinel.com, 17 Oct. 2021 For up-to-the-minute updates, follow our live coverage. Cheri Mossburg And Amir Vera, CNN, 13 Sep. 2021 The company recommends not taking the hands of the wheel for more than 30 seconds to a minute depending on conditions. Ed Garsten, Forbes, 9 Sep. 2021 Full flight information from the previous day's mission is reviewed and the up-to-the-minute weather probabilities are described. Aubrey O. Cookman, Popular Mechanics, 9 Sep. 2021 Follow along with our up-to-the-minute live blog packed with scores and highlights from the area’s biggest games. Gabriel Stovall, The Courier-Journal, 3 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The Paralympics Games also impose minute technical specifications for equipment, so Ottobock is often called upon to do a little jerry-rigging. Samanth Subramanian, Quartz, 24 Aug. 2021 The sweetener, tagatose, is in fact a sugar that occurs naturally, in minute quantities, in milk and beets. New York Times, 4 Aug. 2021 There are minute little fluctuations in each instance of time. Chris Smith, BGR, 30 July 2021 The detailed 1:1 scale model mirrors the hybrid supercar down to the most minute details and took some 8,660 hours to come to fruition. Rachel Cormack, Robb Report, 12 June 2021 At the opposite end of the spectrum are parents who feel that the risk to kids from COVID is so minute that the risk associated with vaccination actually outweighs it. Los Angeles Times, 7 June 2021 Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul said the new equipment will allow the lab to detect minute amounts of fentanyl mixed into other drugs, along with other forms of the drug still being discovered. Laura Schulte, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 10 Mar. 2021 Animal products could cause contamination or disease, even in minute quantities, so manufacturers now use synthetic chemicals. Rachana Pradhan, Fortune, 23 Feb. 2021 Scientists have found that even minute amounts of many of the chemicals can be dangerous. David Abel, BostonGlobe.com, 5 Feb. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Extremely disturbing is that many of these pesticides have active ingredients that are highly toxic to bees, and also to minute pirate bugs, lacewings and predatory mites or spiders that help us in our fight against this and other pests. San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 July 2021 That kind of dynamism where people are making the decisions minute to minute whether to work simply does not exist in the traditional employment framework. Carolyn Said, SFChronicle.com, 11 July 2019 The turn of Slender-White’s head or the flick of Burns’ hand drew intense scrutiny, and the mind reeled at artists who would devote themselves to creating so minute a masterwork. Claudia Bauer, San Francisco Chronicle, 29 Dec. 2017 Hoffenheim came out the better in the second half and played some exceptional football in this match, however in the 62nd minute their good work was undone when defender Stefan Posch brought down Kagawa in the box, and Dortmund had a penalty. SI.com, 16 Dec. 2017 It wasn't meant to be followed on a day to day, minute to minute basis. Danielle Ofri, Slate Magazine, 19 Jan. 2017 A 1929 Mercedes-Benz S Barker Tourer took first prize overall at the annual event, winning top honors for its owner’s dedication to minute details of authenticity and provenance. Hannah Elliott, Bloomberg.com, 21 Aug. 2017 These include various breathing and visualization exercises, and also work with eye positions—based on the theory that different emotions correlate to minute variations in the direction of gaze. Matthew Green, Newsweek, 23 Mar. 2017

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1601, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for minute

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Middle French, from Late Latin minuta, from Latin minutus small, from past participle of minuere to lessen — more at minor


Latin minutus

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Time Traveler for minute

Time Traveler

The first known use of minute was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near minute

minus sign


minute by minute

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Statistics for minute

Last Updated

19 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Minute.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/minute. Accessed 25 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for minute


min·​ute | \ ˈmi-nət How to pronounce minute (audio) \

Kids Definition of minute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a unit of time equal to 60 seconds : the 60th part of an hour
2 : moment sense 1 Can you wait a minute?
3 : one of 60 equal parts into which a degree can be divided for measuring angles
4 minutes plural : a brief record of what was said and done during a meeting


mi·​nute | \ mī-ˈnüt How to pronounce minute (audio) , mə-, -ˈnyüt \
minuter; minutest

Kids Definition of minute (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : very small : tiny minute particles of dust
2 : marked by or paying attention to small details a minute description

Other Words from minute

minutely adverb He lifted the wand and examined it minutely— J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire


min·​ute | \ ˈmin-ət How to pronounce minute (audio) \

Medical Definition of minute

: a 60th part of an hour of time or of a degree


min·​ute | \ ˈmi-nət How to pronounce minute (audio) \

Legal Definition of minute

1 : a brief note (as of summary or recommendation)
3 plural : the official record of the proceedings of a meeting or court

More from Merriam-Webster on minute

Nglish: Translation of minute for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of minute for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about minute


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