- the space around the printed or written matter on a page.
- an amount allowed or available beyond what is actually necessary: to allow a margin for error.
- a limit in condition, capacity, etc., beyond or below which something ceases to exist, be desirable, or be possible: the margin of endurance; the margin of sanity.
- a border or edge.
- Philately. selvage(def 3).
- security, as a percentage in money, deposited with a broker by a client as a provision against loss on transactions.
- the amount representing the customer's investment or equity in such an account.
- the difference between the amount of a loan and the market value of the collateral pledged as security for it.
- Commerce. the difference between the cost and the selling price.
- an amount or degree of difference: The measure passed by a margin of just three votes.
- Economics. the point at which the return from economic activity barely covers the cost of production, and below which production is unprofitable.
- Entomology. the border of an insect's wing.
- to provide with a margin or border.
- to furnish with marginal notes, as a document.
- to enter in the margin, as of a book.
- Finance. to deposit a margin upon.
- Stock Exchange. to purchase (securities) on margin: That stock was heavily margined during the last month.
Origin of margin
SynonymsSee more synonyms for margin on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for margin
Sixty-seven Republicans voted against it, a margin in line with estimates of many conservatives from earlier in the day.‘Cromnibus’ Passes, But Did Anyone Win?
December 12, 2014
We believe in Him by a landslide 74 percent to 26 percent margin.Up to a Point: Thanks to the Biggest Turkey, Uncle Sam
P. J. O’Rourke
November 27, 2014
In the end, Shumlin led by a puny 2,434 votes, less than the 50 percent margin needed for victory under Vermont law.What the Hell Happened in Vermont?!
November 13, 2014
That sounds pretty impressive, until you consider that, just two years earlier, in 2012, the margin was 44 percent.Latinos Aren’t a ‘Cheap Date’ for Democrats Anymore
Ruben Navarrette Jr.
November 11, 2014
By a margin of 63 percent to 37 percent, Colorado voters rejected the “personhood” measure.How’d the GOP Win? By Running Left
November 6, 2014
But the margin has it "of thy servant," which does not agree with the person of the verb.A Theological-Political Treatise [Part II]
Benedict of Spinoza
There is a limit to the best man's experience; a margin of error in the best man's judgment.The Leopard Woman
Stewart Edward White
We went down to the margin, under the bank, and pursued our way along the stream.Ned Myers
James Fenimore Cooper
In the margin of the register is written, “This was her funeral text.”English Villages
P. H. Ditchfield
He perused the papers earnestly, making pencil-marks on the margin here and there.A Woman Intervenes
archaic margent (ˈmɑːdʒənt)
- an edge or rim, and the area immediately adjacent to it; border
- the blank space surrounding the text on a page
- a vertical line on a page, esp one on the left-hand side, delineating this space
- an additional amount or one beyond the minimum necessarya margin of error
- mainly Australian a payment made in addition to a basic wage, esp for special skill or responsibility
- a bound or limit
- the amount by which one thing differs from anothera large margin separated the parties
- commerce the profit on a transaction
- economics the minimum return below which an enterprise becomes unprofitable
- collateral deposited by a client with a broker as security
- the excess of the value of a loan's collateral over the value of the loan
- to provide with a margin; border
- finance to deposit a margin upon
Word Origin and History for margin
mid-14c., "edge of a sea or lake;" late 14c., "space between a block of text and the edge of a page," from Latin marginem (nominative margo) "edge, brink, border, margin," from PIE *merg- "edge, border, boundary" (see mark (n.1)). General sense of "boundary space; rim or edge of anything" is from late 14c. Meaning "comfort allowance, cushion" is from 1851; margin of safety first recorded 1888. Stock market sense of "sum deposited with a broker to cover risk of loss" is from 1848. Related: Margins.
c.1600, "to furnish with marginal notes," from margin (n.). From 1715 as "to furnish with a margin."
- A border or edge, as of an organ.
- A limit in a condition or process, beyond or below which something is no longer possible or acceptable.
- An amount that is allowed but that is beyond what is needed.
- A measure, quantity, or degree of difference.