importance; consequence: the significance of the new treaty.
meaning; import: The familiar place had a new significance for her.
the quality of being significant or having a meaning: to give significance to dull chores.

Origin of significance

1400–50; late Middle English (< Middle French) < Latin significantia force, meaning, equivalent to significant- (see significant) + -ia -ia; see -ance
Related formsnon·sig·nif·i·cance, nounself-sig·nif·i·cance, noun

Synonyms for significance

1. moment, weight. See importance. 2. See meaning.

Antonyms for significance Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for significances

Historical Examples of significances

  • He was quick and alert in the things of life, but only in the things, and not in the significances.

    Lost Face

    Jack London

  • If we can just get that word and its significances over to the women in this town!


    George Madden Martin

  • As tints, so significances, more delicate shall be won by man's soul in contact with nature.

    Nature Mysticism

    J. Edward Mercer

  • The significances which it is meant that clothes should bear are still most numerous and important.

    The Heritage of Dress

    Wilfred Mark Webb

  • My word, as an exclamation with a thousand significances, could have arrived from nowhere else than Old England.

British Dictionary definitions for significances



consequence or importance
something signified, expressed, or intended
the state or quality of being significant
  1. 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
  2. (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

Word Origin and History for significances



c.1400, "meaning," from Old French significance or directly from Latin significantia "meaning, force, energy," from significans, present participle of significare "to mean, import, signify" (see signify). The earlier word was signifiance (mid-13c.). Meaning "importance" is from 1725. Related: Significancy.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper