English edit

Etymology edit

From Latin significans, present participle of significare, from signum (sign) + ficare (do, make), variant of facere.

Pronunciation edit

  • (UK) IPA(key): /sɪɡˈnɪf.ɪ.kənt/
  • (US) IPA(key): /sɪɡˈnɪf.ə.kənt/, /sɪɡˈnɪf.ə.ɡənt/
    • (file)

Adjective edit

significant (comparative more significant, superlative most significant)

  1. Signifying something; carrying meaning.
    Synonym: meaningful
    a significant word or sound
    a significant look
    • 1614, Walter Ralegh [i.e., Walter Raleigh], The Historie of the World [], London: [] William Stansby for Walter Burre, [], →OCLC, (please specify |book=1 to 5):
      It was well said of Plotinus, that the stars were significant, but not efficient.
    • 1856, Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins, chapter III, in The Wreck of the Golden Mary, part two, page 99:
      As evening came on, it grew prematurely dark and cloudy; while the waves acquired that dull indigo tint so significant of ugly weather.
  2. Having a covert or hidden meaning.
  3. Having a noticeable or major effect.
    Synonym: notable
    That was a significant step in the right direction.
    The First World War was a significant event.
    • 2015, Shane R. Reeves, David Wallace, “The Combatant Status of the “Little Green Men” and Other Participants in the Ukraine Conflict”, in International Law Studies, US Naval War College[1], volume 91, number 361, Stockton Center for the Study of International Law, page 393:
      The “little green men”—faces covered, wearing unmarked olive uniforms, speaking Russian and using Russian weapons—have played a significant role in both the occupation of Crimea and the civil war in eastern Ukraine.196
  4. Reasonably large in number or amount.
  5. (statistics) Having a low probability of occurring by chance (for example, having high correlation and thus likely to be related).

Synonyms edit

Antonyms edit

Derived terms edit

Related terms edit

Translations edit

Noun edit

significant (plural significants)

  1. That which has significance; a sign; a token; a symbol.

References edit

Catalan edit

Verb edit


  1. gerund of significar

Latin edit

Verb edit


  1. third-person plural present active indicative of significō