Definition of minority in English:

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Pronunciation: /məˈnôrədē/

noun (plural minorities)

1The smaller number or part, especially a number that is less than half the whole number: harsher measures for the minority of really serious offenders [as modifier]: a minority party
More example sentences
  • The group is regarded as a fundamentalist organisation representing the views of the minority of Muslims.
  • And for the minority of people who can't, having restricted licensing hours is highly unlikely to deter them.
  • The A-level of old had a specific function: to test the minority of young people who would go on to higher education.
1.1The number of votes cast for or by the smaller party in a legislative assembly: a blocking minority of 23 votes
More example sentences
  • This means that a minority of just 26 votes can block a decision.
  • The balance of voting in the Council of Ministers had, up to this point, meant that a 'blocking minority' of 23 votes was required.
1.2A relatively small group of people, especially one commonly discriminated against in a community, society, or nation, differing from others in race, religion, language, or political persuasion: representatives of ethnic minorities [as modifier]: minority rights
More example sentences
  • It seems extraordinary that as liberals we now feel secure enough to impose our own orthodoxies on the dissenting minorities within our community.
  • There are no real race or religion minorities, much less any clashes.
  • There were no Tamil or Muslim candidates representing the country's main ethnic and religious minorities.
2The state or period of being under the age of full legal responsibility.
Example sentences
  • During the claimant's minority the initial limitation period would not run.
  • Claims by children are not limited to those made during their minority; an adult child may seek an order.
  • The context was exceptional, for royal authority was weakened by the minority of Louis XIV.



be (or find oneself) in a minority of one

often humorous Be the sole person to be in favor of or against something.
Example sentences
  • Last night there was relief in Downing Street that the prime minister right had not ultimately found himself in a minority of one.
  • In this, as in other quarrels, Wilson found himself in a minority of one.
  • It is also true that, within the Government, let alone the Parliamentary Labour Party, he was in a minority of one in his support for top-up fees as the means by which to achieve that end.

in the minority

Belonging to or constituting the smaller group or number: those who acknowledge his influence are certainly in the minority
More example sentences
  • There are poems which express a more conventional view of God, but they're certainly in the minority.
  • You're also, however, running pretty puny databases and certainly in the minority.
  • Pirates would have been my choice but I would have thought I was in the minority.


Late 15th century (denoting the state of being a minor): from French minorité or medieval Latin minoritas, from Latin minor 'smaller' (see minor).

Words that rhyme with minority

authority, inferiority, juniority, majority, priority, seniority, sonority, sorority, superiority

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: mi·nor·i·ty

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