Meaning of MINOR in English


adj., n., & v.


1. lesser or comparatively small in size or importance (minor poet; minor operation).

2 Mus. a (of a scale) having intervals of a semitone between the second and third, fifth and sixth, and seventh and eighth degrees. b (of an interval) less by a semitone than a major interval. c (of a key) based on a minor scale, tending to produce a melancholy effect.

3 Brit. (in schools) indicating the younger of two children from the same family or the second to enter the school (usu. put after the name).

4 Logic a (of a term) occurring as the subject of the conclusion of a categorical syllogism. b (of a premiss) containing the minor term in a categorical syllogism.


1. a person under the legal age limit or majority (no unaccompanied minors).

2 Mus. a minor key etc.

3 US a student's subsidiary subject or course (cf. MAJOR).

4 Logic a minor term or premiss.

--v.intr. (foll. by in) US (of a student) undertake study in (a subject) as a subsidiary to a main subject.

Phrases and idioms:

in a minor key (of novels, events, people's lives, etc.) understated, uneventful. minor axis Geom. (of a conic) the axis perpendicular to the major axis. minor canon a cleric who is not a member of the chapter, who assists in daily cathedral services. minor league US (in baseball, football, etc.) a league of professional clubs other than the major leagues. minor orders see ORDER. minor piece Chess a bishop or a knight. minor planet an asteroid. minor prophet any of the prophets from Hosea to Malachi, whose surviving writings are not lengthy. minor suit Bridge diamonds or clubs.

Etymology: L, smaller, less, rel. to minuere lessen

Oxford English vocab.      Оксфордский английский словарь.