Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1500-1600
Language: French
Origin: majorité, from Latin major; MAJOR1

majority

noun
     
Related topics: Voting, Law
ma‧jor‧i‧ty plural majorities
1

most people or things

[singular also + plural verb British English] most of the people or things in a group [≠ minority]
majority of
The majority of students find it quite hard to live on the amount of money they get.
great/vast/overwhelming majority of something (=almost all of a group)
In the vast majority of cases the disease is fatal.
be in the majority (=form the largest group)
In this city, Muslims are in the majority.
silent majority
2

most votes

[countable]PPV if one person or group wins a majority in an election, they win more votes than other people or groups
majority of 50/100 etc
He won by a majority of 500.
The Labour Party won a huge majority at the last general election.
clear/overall/absolute majority (=a situation in which one party wins more votes in an election than all the other parties)
The party won an absolute majority in Portugal in 1987.
small/narrow majority
The government gained only a narrow majority, with 151 votes against 144.
Labour/Conservative etc majority
The Labour majority was reduced to just 15 seats at the last election.
3

majority vote/decision/verdict etc

a vote or decision in which more people vote for something than vote against it:
The committee takes decisions by majority vote.
The jury found him guilty by a majority verdict.
4

majority stake/shareholding etc

when one person or group owns a bigger share of a company than other people or groups and so is able to control what happens to the company:
Alex Golding held a majority shareholding in Golding plc.
5

becoming an adult

[uncountable] British English lawSCL the age when someone legally becomes an adult [≠ minority]
reach majority/the age of majority
He became a partner in the family firm on reaching his majority.

Dictionary pictures of the day
Do you know what each of these is called?
What is the word for picture 1? What is the word for picture 2? What is the word for picture 3? What is the word for picture 4?
Click on any of the pictures above to find out what it is called.

Explore our topic dictionary