a plural of minimum.


[min-uh-muh m]

noun, plural min·i·mums, min·i·ma [min-uh-muh] /ˈmɪn ə mə/.

the least quantity or amount possible, assignable, allowable, or the like.
the lowest speed permitted on a highway.
the lowest amount, value, or degree attained or recorded.
an arbitrary amount set by a restaurant, nightclub, etc., as the least amount to be charged each person for food and drink.Compare cover charge.
  1. Also called relative minimum, local minimum.the value of a function at a certain point in its domain, which is less than or equal to the values at all other points in the immediate vicinity of the point.Compare absolute minimum.
  2. the point in the domain at which a minimum occurs.


noting or indicating a minimum.
least possible: minimum risk.
lowest: a minimum rate.
pertaining to a minimum or minimums.

Origin of minimum

1655–65; < Latin, neuter of minimus smallest, least. See minor
Can be confusedminimal minimize minimum minuscule minutia (see usage note at minuscule) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for minima

Historical Examples of minima

British Dictionary definitions for minima



a plural of minimum


noun plural -mums or -ma (-mə)

the least possible amount, degree, or quantity
the least amount recorded, allowed, or reachedthe minimum in our temperature record this month was 50°
(modifier) being the least possible, recorded, allowed, etcminimum age
maths a value of a function that is less than any neighbouring value


of or relating to a minimum or minimums

Word Origin for minimum

C17: from Latin: smallest thing, from minimus least
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 minima



1660s, "smallest portion into which matter is divisible," from Latin minimum "smallest" (thing), neuter of minimus "smallest, least," superlative of minor "smaller" (see minor). Meaning "least amount attainable" is from 1670s.



1810, from minimum (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

minima in Science



Plural minimums minima

The lowest known or lowest possible number, measure, quantity, or degree.
The lowest value of a mathematical function, if it has such a value.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.