1. Mathematics Reduced by the subtraction of; less: Ten minus four is six.
2. Informal Without: I went to work minus my ID.
1. Mathematics Negative or on the negative part of a scale: a minus value; minus five degrees.
2. Ranking on the lower end of a designated scale: a grade of A minus.
a. The minus sign (-).
b. A negative quantity.
2. A deficiency or defect.
[Middle English, from Latin minus, neuter of minor, less; see mei-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.