- less by the subtraction of; decreased by: Ten minus six is four.
- lacking or without: a book minus its title page.
- involving or noting subtraction.
- algebraically negative: a minus quantity.
- less than; just below in quality: to get a C minus on a test.
- Informal. having negative qualities or characteristics; inferior.
- Mycology. (in heterothallic fungi) designating, in the absence of morphological differentiation, one of the two strains of mycelia that unite in the sexual process.
- minus sign.
- a minus quantity.
- a deficiency or loss.
- Informal. a person or thing with no apparent abilities, usefulness, etc.: The last applicant was a definite minus.
Origin of minus
Related Wordsmortgage, loan, inconvenience, damage, responsibility, involvement, obligation, flaw, drawback, disadvantage, need, require, want, encumbrance, pledge, chit, millstone, tab, misfortune, onus
Examples from the Web for minuses
Howard Kurtz on the pluses and minuses of potential Mitt running mates after his decisive win in New Hampshire.Mitt Romney’s Dilemma: Picking a Running Mate if He’s the GOP Nominee
January 12, 2012
So Silicon Valley is destined to become a technological metropolis and there are pluses and minuses to that.From the Archives: Steve Jobs on the Birth of the Mac
October 6, 2011
"I don't sit around calculating the political pluses and minuses of every word I utter," Daniels said.March 13: 7 Best Moments From Sunday Talk
The Daily Beast Video
March 13, 2011
For the majority of the art world, the pluses for using apps continue to far outweigh the minuses.The Art App Boom
August 27, 2010
Life must be studied not from the pluses alone, but from the minuses too.Letters of Anton Chekhov
Only the most expert examiner should limit his record to pluses and minuses.Condensed Guide for the Stanford Revision of the Binet-Simon Intelligence Tests
Lewis Madison Terman
Peace cannot be reached by the simple addition of pluses and elimination of minuses from life.Introduction to the Science of Sociology
Robert E. Park
- reduced by the subtraction offour minus two (written 4 – 2)
- informal deprived of; lackingminus the trimmings, that hat would be ordinary
- indicating or involving subtractiona minus sign
- Also: negativehaving a value or designating a quantity less than zeroa minus number
- on the negative part of a scale or coordinate axisa value of minus 40°C
- involving a disadvantage, harm, etca minus factor
- (postpositive) education slightly below the standard of a particular gradehe received a B minus for his essay
- botany designating the strain of a fungus that can only undergo sexual reproduction with a plus strain
- denoting a negative electric charge
- short for minus sign
- a negative quantity
- a disadvantage, loss, or deficit
- informal something detrimental or negative
Word Origin and History for minuses
late 15c., "with subtraction of," from Latin minus "less," neuter of minor "smaller," from PIE *mi-nu-, suffixed form of root *mei- "small" (cf. Latin minuere "to diminish, reduce, lessen," Greek meion "less, smaller," Old English minsian "to diminish," Sanskrit miyate "diminishes, declines," Russian men'she "less").
Mathematical use in expressions of calculation did not exist in the word in classical Latin and is probably from North Sea medieval commercial usage of Latin plus and minus to indicate surplus or deficiency of weight or measure. Origin of the "minus sign" is disputed.
1650s, from minus (prep.).