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mediocrity

[mee-dee-ok-ri-tee]
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noun, plural me·di·oc·ri·ties.
  1. the state or quality of being mediocre.
  2. mediocre ability or accomplishment.
  3. a mediocre person.

Origin of mediocrity

1400–50; late Middle English mediocrite < Middle French mediocrite < Latin mediocritāt- (stem of mediocritās) a middle state, moderation. See mediocre, -ity
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for mediocrities

Historical Examples

  • They are his moderators, his mediocrities, his metriopathics.

    Notes and Queries, Number 186, May 21, 1853

    Various

  • Indifference is the revenge the world takes on mediocrities.

    Vera

    Oscar Wilde

  • After that you have the army of mediocrities followed by the multitude of fools.

  • Let him read what is proper to him, and not waste his memory on a crowd of mediocrities.

    The Book-lover

    James Baldwin

  • And consider the mediocrities, the dull, ugly, royal persons he was forced to paint!

    Franz Liszt

    James Huneker


British Dictionary definitions for mediocrities

mediocrity

noun plural -ties
  1. the state or quality of being mediocre
  2. a mediocre person or thing
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for mediocrities

mediocrity

n.

early 15c., "moderation; intermediate state or amount," from Middle French médiocrité and directly from Latin mediocritatem (nominative mediocritas) "a middle state, middling condition, medium," from mediocris (see mediocre). Neutral at first; disparaging sense began to predominate from late 16c. The meaning "person of mediocre abilities or attainments" is from 1690s. Before the tinge of disparagement crept in, another name for the Golden Mean was golden mediocrity.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper