[ sig-nif-i-kuhns ]
See synonyms for significance on
  1. importance; consequence: the significance of the new treaty.

  2. meaning; import: The familiar place had a new significance for her.

  1. the quality of being significant or having a meaning: to give significance to dull chores.

Origin of significance

First recorded in 1400–50; late Middle English (from Middle French ), from Latin significantia “force, meaning,” equivalent to significant- (see significant) + -ia -ia; (see -ance)

synonym study For significance

1. See importance. 2. See meaning.

Other words for significance

Opposites for significance

Other words from significance

  • non·sig·nif·i·cance, noun
  • self-sig·nif·i·cance, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use significance in a sentence

  • The deadliness of the blow which had stupefied her still left her barely conscious of earthly significances.

    Robin | Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • As it was, it seemed to Lee, a dictionary of synonyms would be helpless to make all its varied significances distinct.

    Cytherea | Joseph Hergesheimer
  • We take up a novel, perhaps, which we read five years ago; we find in it now new significances and appeals.

    The Gate of Appreciation | Carleton Noyes
  • In his fashion he began to remember trifling significances which at the time had meant little to him.

    The Rules of the Game | Stewart Edward White
  • My word, as an exclamation with a thousand significances, could have arrived from nowhere else than Old England.

British Dictionary definitions for significance


/ (sɪɡˈnɪfɪkəns) /

  1. consequence or importance

  2. something signified, expressed, or intended

  1. the state or quality of being significant

  2. statistics

    • a measure of the confidence that can be placed in a result, esp a substantive causal hypothesis, as not being merely a matter of chance

    • (as modifier): a significance level Compare confidence level See also hypothesis testing

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