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 (mə-nôr′ĭ-tē, -nŏr′-, mī-)
n. pl. mi·nor·i·ties
a. The smaller in number of two groups forming a whole.
b. A group or party having fewer than a controlling number of votes.
a. A racial, religious, political, national, or other group thought to be different from the larger group of which it is part.
b. A group having little power or representation relative to other groups within a society.
c. A member of one of these groups. See Usage Note at color.
3. Law The state or period of being younger than the age for legal adulthood: still in her minority.

[French minorité, from Medieval Latin minōritās, from Latin minor, smaller; see minor.]
Usage Note: Socially speaking, a minority is an ethnic, racial, religious, or other group having a distinctive presence within a larger society. Some people object to this term as negative or dismissive, and it should be avoided in contexts where a group's status with regard to the majority population is irrelevant. Thus we would normally say a poem celebrating the diversity of cultures (not minorities) in America, where the emphasis is cultural as opposed to statistical or political. But in the appropriate context, as when discussing a group from a social or demographic point of view, minority is a useful term that need not be avoided as offensive. · A different problem arises when minority is used to refer to an individual rather than a group, as in the sentence As a minority, I am particularly sensitive to the need for fair hiring practices. In our 2011 survey, 58 percent of the Usage Panel found this example unacceptable. However, when the word was used in the plural without a numeral or a quantifier like many or some—as in The firm announced plans to hire more minorities and women—the Panelists were more approving, with only 25 percent judging an example such as this one unacceptable The discrepancy in these opinions can be explained by the fact that in this type of plural usage, the word is understood as referring to the members of a group taken collectively rather than as individuals.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(maɪˈnɒrɪtɪ; mɪ-)
n, pl -ties
1. the smaller in number of two parts, factions, or groups
2. (Sociology) a group that is different racially, politically, etc, from a larger group of which it is a part
a. the state of being a minor
b. the period during which a person is below legal age. Compare majority
4. (modifier) relating to or being a minority: a minority interest; a minority opinion.
[C16: from Medieval Latin minōritās, from Latin minor]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(mɪˈnɔr ɪ ti, -ˈnɒr-, maɪ-)

n., pl. -ties,
adj. n.
1. the smaller part or number; a number, part, or amount forming less than half of the whole.
2. a smaller group opposed to a majority.
3. Also called minor′ity group`. a group differing, esp. in race, religion, or ethnic background, from the majority of a population.
4. a member of such a group.
5. the state or period of being under full legal age.
6. of or pertaining to a minority.
[1525–35; < Medieval Latin minōritās. See minor, -ity]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


If something is true of a minority of the people or things in a group, it is true of less than half of the whole group.

Only a minority of cable and satellite viewers are shocked by what they see on television.

You can talk about a small minority (for example 8%) or a large minority (for example 40%).

Only a small minority of children get a chance to benefit from the system.
The incomes of a large minority of tenants are inadequate to enable them to pay their rents.

When a minority is not followed by 'of', you can use either a plural or singular form of a verb after it. The plural form is more common.

Only a minority were active in pursuing their beliefs.

When you use a minority of followed by a plural noun, you must use a plural form of a verb after it.

Only a minority of people ever become actively engaged on any issue.
Collins COBUILD English Usage © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 2004, 2011, 2012
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.minority - a group of people who differ racially or politically from a larger group of which it is a part
social group - people sharing some social relation
2.minority - being or relating to the smaller in number of two partsminority - being or relating to the smaller in number of two parts; "when the vote was taken they were in the minority"; "he held a minority position"
number, figure - the property possessed by a sum or total or indefinite quantity of units or individuals; "he had a number of chores to do"; "the number of parameters is small"; "the figure was about a thousand"
bulk, majority - the property resulting from being or relating to the greater in number of two parts; the main part; "the majority of his customers prefer it"; "the bulk of the work is finished"
3.minority - any age prior to the legal ageminority - any age prior to the legal age  
legal status - a status defined by law
eld, age - a time of life (usually defined in years) at which some particular qualification or power arises; "she was now of school age"; "tall for his eld"
legal age, majority - the age at which persons are considered competent to manage their own affairs
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


The state or period of being under legal age:
Law: infancy.
The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
minnihluti; minnihlutahópur
thiểu số


A. N
1. (= small number) → minoría f
only a small minority of children contract the diseasesólo una pequeña minoría de niños contraen la enfermedad
to be in a or the minorityser minoría, estar en minoría
you're in a minority of one, there! (hum) → ¡te has quedado más sólo que la una!
2. (= community) → minoría f
ethnic minorityminoría f étnica
3. (Jur) (= age) → minoría f de edad
1. [group, interest, view, government] → minoritario
minority languagelengua f minoritaria
minority rights (Pol) → derechos mpl de las minorías
2. (Fin) minority interest; minority stakeparticipación f minoritaria
minority shareholderaccionista mf minoritario
minority shareholdingaccionado m minoritario
3. (US) (Pol) Minority Leaderlíder mf de la oposición
House Minority Leaderlíder mf de la oposición del Congreso
Senate Minority Leaderlíder mf de la oposición del Senado

Singular or plural verb?
When minoría is the subject of a verb, the verb can be in the singular or the plural, depending on the context:
 Put the verb in the singular if minority is seen as a unit rather than a collection of individuals:
A minority should always be respected, however small it may be Una minoría, aunque sea pequeña, debe ser respetada siempre
 If la minoría is seen as a collection of individuals, particularly when it is followed by de + ((PLURAL NOUN)), the plural form of the verb is more common than the singular, though both are possible:
...a minority of agitators want to introduce anarchy ...una minoría de agitadores quieren or quiere traer la anarquía
 The plural form must be used when la minoría or la minoría de + ((PLURAL NOUN)) is followed by ser or estar + ((plural complement)):
Only a minority of the demonstrators were students Sólo una minoría de los manifestantes eran estudiantes
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005


[total number] → minorité f
to be in a minority → être en minorité
to be in the minority → être dans la minorité
a small minority of → une petite minorité de
(= group) → minorité f
the region's ethnic minorities → les minorités ethniques de la région minorities
(= minority groups) → minorités fpl
(= members of minority groups) → minorités fpl
women and minorities → les femmes et les minoritésminority group nminorité f
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


Minderheit f, → Minorität f; to be in a or the minorityin der Minderheit sein; the reforms will affect only a small minority of the populationdie Reformen werden sich nur auf eine kleine Minderheit in der Bevölkerung auswirken; you are in a minority of oneSie stehen allein da
(Jur) → Minderjährigkeit f
adj attr
Minderheits-; minority groupMinderheit f, → Minorität f; minority communityMinderheit f; (ethnic) minority studentsStudenten pl, → die einer (ethnischen) Minderheit angehören; minority opinionMinderheitsmeinung f; a minority viewdie Ansicht einer Minderheit; minority rights (Pol) → Minderheitenrechte pl; minority programme (Brit) or program (US) (Rad/TV) → Programm, das nur einen kleinen Hörerkreis/Zuschauerkreis anspricht
(US Pol: = opposition) House/Senate Minority LeaderOppositionsführer(in) m(f) (im Repräsentantenhaus/Senat)


minority government
minority holding, minority interest
n (Fin) → Minderheitsbeteiligung f
minority shareholder
n (Fin) → Kleinaktionär(in) m(f)
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007


1. nminoranza
to be in a minority → essere in minoranza
2. adj (verdict) → minoritario/a; (government) → di minoranza
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995


(ˈmainə) adjective
1. less, or little, in importance, size etc. Always halt when driving from a minor road on to a major road; She has to go into hospital for a minor operation.
2. (American) a secondary subject that a student chooses to study at university or college. Her major is in physics, but she has a minor in computer science.
(American) to study something as a minor subject. He is minoring in French.
a person who is not yet legally an adult.
miˈnority (miˈno-) , (mӕiˈno-) noun
a small number; less than half. Only a minority of people live in the countryside; a racial/political minority.
be in the minority
to be in the smaller of two groups. Women were in the minority at the meeting.
Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary © 2006-2013 K Dictionaries Ltd.


أقَلِيَّةٌ menšina minoritet Minderheit μειονότητα minoría vähemmistö minorité manjina minoranza 少数派 소수 minderheid minoritet mniejszość minoria меньшинство minoritet คนกลุ่มน้อย azınlık thiểu số 少数
Multilingual Translator © HarperCollins Publishers 2009


n. minoría, minoridad.
English-Spanish Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012
References in classic literature ?
If my memory serves me the disasters which overtook the Majority of this honourable body always befell when it was the Minority's deal.
If by the mere force of numbers a majority should deprive a minority of any clearly written Constitutional right, it might, in a moral point of view, justify revolution--certainly would if such a right were a vital one.
It may happen that this majority of States is a small minority of the people of America;[3] and two thirds of the people of America could not long be persuaded, upon the credit of artificial distinctions and syllogistic subtleties, to submit their interests to the management and disposal of one third.
The same difficulty occurs, should it ever happen that the poor compose a smaller part of the people than the rich, but from their superior abilities acquire the supreme power; for this is what they call an oligarchy; it should seem then that our definition of the different states was not correct: nay, moreover, could any one suppose that the majority of the people were poor, and the minority rich, and then describe the state in this manner, that an oligarchy was a government in which the rich, being few in number, possessed the supreme power, and that a democracy was a state in which the poor, being many in number, possessed it, still there will be another difficulty; for what name shall we give to those states we have been describing?
The condition of the unsuccessful minority is truly pitiable.
After all, the practical reason why, when the power is once in the hands of the people, a majority are permitted, and for a long period continue, to rule, is not because they are most likely to be in the right, nor because this seems fairest to the minority, but because they are physically the strongest.
"Madame," said he, in a grave tone, still partaking something of the timid child, "monsieur le cardinal will tell you that during my minority the affairs of France were in jeopardy, -- and that if I had been older, and obliged to take sword in hand, it would sometimes have been for the evening meal."
Unfortunately here, also, I find the individual native in the minority. There are only four French persons in the house--the individuals concerned in its management, three of whom are women, and one a man.
A minority of those present were casual guests- chiefly young men, among whom were Denisov, Rostov, and Dolokhov- who was now again an officer in the Semenov regiment.
Ruby Gillis was the handsomest girl of the year at the Academy; in the Second Year classes Stella Maynard carried off the palm for beauty, with small but critical minority in favor of Anne Shirley.
There are not so many of him; but his minority report is adopted everywhere.
After all, the practical reason why, when the power is once in the hands of the people, a majority are permitted, and for a long period continue, to rule is not because they are most likely to be in the right, nor because this seems fairest to the minority, but because they are physically the strongest.

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