the share or proportional part of a total that is required from, or is due or belongs to, a particular district, state, person, group, etc.
a proportional part or share of a fixed total amount or quantity.
the number or percentage of persons of a specified kind permitted to enroll in a college, join a club, immigrate to a country, etc.

Origin of quota

1660–70; < Medieval Latin, short for Latin quota pars how great a part?

Synonyms for quota

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for quota

Contemporary Examples of quota

Historical Examples of quota

  • To this general excitement the strange case of Mr. Le Moyne had added its quota.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • In the Fourth ward, where he lives, there never was a man drafted to fill its quota.

  • And to get that blood every Apexan must yield his quota in the temple.

    The Heads of Apex

    Francis Flagg

  • He suddenly realized that he had exceeded his quota of questions, and that he could get into trouble.

    The Players

    Everett B. Cole

  • Every wood and field has its quota, and no place so barren but it has some bird to visit it.

British Dictionary definitions for quota



the proportional share or part of a whole that is due from, due to, or allocated to a person or group
a prescribed number or quantity, as of items to be manufactured, imported, or exported, immigrants admitted to a country, or students admitted to a college

Word Origin for quota

C17: from Latin quota pars how big a share?, from quotus of what number
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 quota

1660s, from Medieval Latin quota, from Latin quota pars "how large a part," from quota, fem. singular of quotus "which, what number (in sequence);" see quote (v.). Earliest reference is to contributions of soldiers or supplies levied from a town or district; immigration sense is from 1921.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper