What does marginal mean?

Definitions for marginal
ˈmɑr dʒə nlmar·gin·al

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word marginal.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. fringy, marginaladjective

    at or constituting a border or edge

    "the marginal strip of beach"

  2. borderline, marginaladjective

    of questionable or minimal quality

    "borderline grades"; "marginal writing ability"

  3. bare(a), marginaladjective

    just barely adequate or within a lower limit

    "a bare majority"; "a marginal victory"

  4. marginaladjective

    producing at a rate that barely covers production costs

    "marginal industries"


  1. Marginaladjective

    At the lower limit; barely sufficient; as, of marginal utility.


  1. marginalnoun

    Something that is marginal.

  2. marginalnoun

    A constituency won with a small margin.

  3. marginaladjective

    Of, relating to, or located at or near a margin or edge; also figurative usages of location and margin (edge).

  4. marginaladjective

    Determined by a small margin; having a salient characteristic determined by a small margin.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Marginalnoun

    Placed, or written on the margin.

    Etymology: marginal, French, from margin.

    We cannot better interpret the meaning of these words than pope Leo himself expoundeth them, whose speech concerning our Lord’s ascension may serve instead of a marginal gloss. Richard Hooker, b. v.

    What remarks you find worthy of your riper observation note with a marginal star, as being worthy of your second year’s review. Isaac Watts, Logick.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Marginaladjective

    of or pertaining to a margin

  2. Marginaladjective

    written or printed in the margin; as, a marginal note or gloss

  3. Etymology: [Cf. F. marginal.]

The New Hacker's Dictionary

  1. marginal

    [common] 1. [techspeak] An extremely small change. “A marginal increase in core can decrease GC time drastically.” In everyday terms, this means that it is a lot easier to clean off your desk if you have a spare place to put some of the junk while you sort through it. 2. Of little merit. “This proposed new feature seems rather marginal to me.” 3. Of extremely small probability of winning. “The power supply was rather marginal anyway; no wonder it fried.”


  1. Marginal

    of, belonging to, or near the margin.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'marginal' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #4200

  2. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'marginal' in Adjectives Frequency: #566

How to pronounce marginal?

How to say marginal in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of marginal in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of marginal in Pythagorean Numerology is: 3

Examples of marginal in a Sentence

  1. Agnes Soucat:

    We are at a crossroads in the health sector in which we see declining marginal returns on investment with new technologies that are expensive but don't necessarily always get a lot of health benefits.

  2. Fabrice Bregier:

    A stretch is feasible at marginal cost, but it depends on our market appreciation and so far the challenge is to convince new airlines that they can profitably increase their market share with an aircraft which is, it's true, much bigger than what they are used to fly.

  3. Anuj Somany:

    It’s difficult to find a person who can accept the truth consistently and more difficult when it is related to him/her only and that’s what keeps the difference between “real talk” and “negative talk” very marginal.

  4. Dileep Mavalankar:

    This (mobile services) will have a very marginal effect.

  5. Anuj Somany:

    The remedy for the stress & strain in life is to stay away from lady, love own good daddy, support marginal farmers growing any crops like paddy, befriend less number of people & only hearty buddy, listen to soulful music and watch only shy & simple person's comedy.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for marginal

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

Get even more translations for marginal »


Find a translation for the marginal definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:

Discuss these marginal definitions with the community:



    Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


    "marginal." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 10 Aug. 2022. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/marginal>.

    Are we missing a good definition for marginal? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Browse Definitions.net

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!


    Are you a words master?

    boldly resisting authority or an opposing force
    • A. ultimo
    • B. defiant
    • C. butch
    • D. incumbent

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for marginal: