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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.
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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

Related Words

normalitycommonnessaveragenessupstartciphernonentitycommoner

Examples from the Web for mediocrity

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • It was a different thing to advertise one's mediocrity to the world.

    K

    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • The kind of renown most accessible and acceptable to mediocrity.

  • I see only mediocrity in her, and you will find a hundred women who will be more worthy of you.

  • I may be the son of a genius, but I am nevertheless a mediocrity.

    Melomaniacs

    James Huneker

  • He is the embodiment of routine and conservatism, because he is the embodiment of mediocrity.

    The Curse of Education

    Harold E. Gorst


British Dictionary definitions for mediocrity

mediocrity

noun plural -ties
  1. the state or quality of being mediocre
  2. a mediocre person or thing
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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 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.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper