What does moderate mean?

Definitions for moderate
ˈmɒd ər ɪt, ˈmɒd rɪt; -əˌreɪtmod·er·ate

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word moderate.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. centrist, middle of the roader, moderate, moderationistadjective

    a person who takes a position in the political center

  2. moderateadjective

    being within reasonable or average limits; not excessive or extreme

    "moderate prices"; "a moderate income"; "a moderate fine"; "moderate demands"; "a moderate estimate"; "a moderate eater"; "moderate success"; "a kitchen of moderate size"; "the X-ray showed moderate enlargement of the heart"

  3. moderate, temperateadjective

    not extreme

    "a moderate penalty"; "temperate in his response to criticism"

  4. moderate, restrainedverb

    marked by avoidance of extravagance or extremes

    "moderate in his demands"; "restrained in his response"

  5. moderate, chair, leadverb

    preside over

    "John moderated the discussion"

  6. moderateverb

    make less fast or intense

    "moderate your speed"

  7. control, hold in, hold, contain, check, curb, moderateverb

    lessen the intensity of; temper; hold in restraint; hold or keep within limits

    "moderate your alcohol intake"; "hold your tongue"; "hold your temper"; "control your anger"

  8. mince, soften, moderateverb

    make less severe or harsh

    "He moderated his tone when the students burst out in tears"

  9. tone down, moderate, tameverb

    make less strong or intense; soften

    "Tone down that aggressive letter"; "The author finally tamed some of his potentially offensive statements"

  10. chasten, moderate, temperverb



  1. Moderateverb

    To preside over, direct, or regulate, as a public meeting or a discussion; as, to moderate a synod; to moderate a debate.


  1. moderatenoun

    One who holds an intermediate position between the extremes relevant in a political context

    While the moderates usually propose political compromise, it's often only achieved when the extremists allow them so

  2. moderatenoun

    Similar middle-grounder in any other context.

    The moderates are the natural advocates of ecumenism against the fanatics of their churches

  3. moderateverb

    To reduce the excessiveness of (something)

  4. moderateverb

    To become less excessive

  5. moderateverb

    To preside over (something) as a moderator

  6. moderateverb

    To act as a moderator; to assist in bringing to compromise

  7. moderateadjective

    Not excessive; acting in moderation

  8. moderateadjective


  9. moderateadjective

    Average priced; standard-deal

  10. moderateadjective

    Having an intermediate position between liberal and conservative.

  11. Etymology: From moderat, from moderatus, perfect active participle of moderor, from moder-, modes-, a stem appearing also in modestus, from modus; see mode and modest.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. MODERATEadjective

    Etymology: moderatus, Lat. moderé, Fr.

    Sound sleep cometh of moderate eating, but pangs of the belly are with an insatiable man. Ecclus. xxxi. 20.

    A number of moderate members managed with so much art as to obtain a majority, in a thin house, for passing a vote, that the king’s concessions were a ground for a future settlement. Jonathan Swift.

    There’s not so much left as to furnish out
    A moderate table. William Shakespeare, Timon of Athens.

    These are tenets which the moderatest of the Romanists will not venture to affirm. George Smalridge.

    Fix’d to one part, but mod’rate to the rest. Alexander Pope.

    Quietly consider the trial that hath been thus long had of both kinds of reformation; as well this moderate kind, which the church of England hath taken, as that other more extreme and rigorous, which certain churches elsewhere have better liked. Richard Hooker, b. iv.

    More moderate gifts might have prolong’d his date,
    Too early fitted for a better state. Dryden.

  2. To Moderateverb

    Etymology: moderor, Latin; moderer, Fr.

    With equal measure she did moderate
    The strong extremities of their rage. Edmund Spenser.

    By its astringent quality it moderates the relaxing quality of warm water. John Arbuthnot, on Aliments.

    Ye swarthy nations of the torrid zone,
    How well to you is this great bounty known?
    For frequent gales from the wide ocean rise
    To fan your air, and moderate your skies. Richard Blackmore.


  1. moderate

    Moderate is an ideological category which designates a rejection of radical or extreme views, especially in regard to politics and religion. A moderate is considered someone occupying any mainstream position avoiding extreme views. In American politics, a moderate is considered someone occupying a centre position on the left–right political spectrum.


  1. moderate

    Moderate can be used as both an adjective and a verb. 1) As an adjective, it is used to describe something or someone that is average in size, amount, or intensity. It can also refer to views, especially on political or social issues, that are neither extreme nor radical, often characterized by tolerance and restraint. 2) As a verb, it means to lessen the intensity or extremity of something, or to preside over a meeting, conference, discussion, or deliberation, ensuring that all the rules and procedures are adhered to.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Moderateadjective

    kept within due bounds; observing reasonable limits; not excessive, extreme, violent, or rigorous; limited; restrained

  2. Moderateadjective

    limited in quantity; sparing; temperate; frugal; as, moderate in eating or drinking; a moderate table

  3. Moderateadjective

    limited in degree of activity, energy, or excitement; reasonable; calm; slow; as, moderate language; moderate endeavors

  4. Moderateadjective

    not extreme in opinion, in partisanship, and the like; as, a moderate Calvinist

  5. Moderateadjective

    not violent or rigorous; temperate; mild; gentle; as, a moderate winter

  6. Moderateadjective

    limited as to degree of progress; as, to travel at moderate speed

  7. Moderateadjective

    limited as to the degree in which a quality, principle, or faculty appears; as, an infusion of moderate strength; a man of moderate abilities

  8. Moderateadjective

    limited in scope or effects; as, a reformation of a moderate kind

  9. Moderatenoun

    one of a party in the Church of Scotland in the 18th century, and part of the 19th, professing moderation in matters of church government, in discipline, and in doctrine

  10. Moderateverb

    to restrain from excess of any kind; to reduce from a state of violence, intensity, or excess; to keep within bounds; to make temperate; to lessen; to allay; to repress; to temper; to qualify; as, to moderate rage, action, desires, etc.; to moderate heat or wind

  11. Moderateverb

    to preside over, direct, or regulate, as a public meeting; as, to moderate a synod

  12. Moderateverb

    to become less violent, severe, rigorous, or intense; as, the wind has moderated

  13. Moderateverb

    to preside as a moderator

  14. Etymology: [L. moderatus, p. p. of moderate, moderati, to moderate, regulate, control, fr. modus measure. See Mode.]


  1. Moderate

    In politics and religion, a moderate is an individual who is not extreme, partisan, nor radical. In recent years, the term political moderates has gained traction as a buzzword. The existence of the ideal moderate is disputed because of a lack of a moderate political ideology. Many people claim to be moderate because of a lack of adherence with the more radical sides of the political or religious spectrum, rather than advocating a specific stance. Aristotle favoured conciliatory politics dominated by the centre rather than the extremes of great wealth and poverty or the special interests of oligarchs and tyrants.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Moderate

    mod′ėr-āt, v.t. to keep within measure or bounds: to regulate: to reduce in intensity: to make temperate or reasonable: to pacify: to decide as a moderator.—v.i. to become less violent or intense: to preside or act as a moderator.—adj. kept within measure or bounds: not excessive or extreme: temperate: of middle rate.—n. one of a party in Scottish Church history dominant in the 18th century, lax in doctrine and discipline, but intolerant of Evangelicanism and popular rights—it caused the secessions of 1733 and 1761, and its final resultant was the Disruption of 1843.—adv. Mod′erately.—ns. Mod′erateness; Moderā′tion, act of moderating: state of being moderated or moderate: freedom from excess: calmness of mind; Mod′eratism, moderate opinions in religion or politics.—adv. Moderä′to (mus.), with moderate quickness.—ns. Mod′erātor, one who, or that which, moderates or restrains: a president or chairman, esp. in Presbyterian Church courts: an officer at the universities of Oxford and Cambridge who superintends the examination for degrees: a kind of lamp in which the flow of the oil to the wick is regulated:—fem. Mod′eratrix; Mod′eratorship. [L. moderāri, -ātusmodus, a measure.]

Editors Contribution

  1. moderate

    A reasonable and fair amount, number or perception.

    He earned a moderate income, enough to meet his required need.

    Submitted by MaryC on January 26, 2015  

  2. moderate

    Balanced and reasonable.

    Their father held a moderate opinion and view in politics and religion.

    Submitted by MaryC on January 24, 2016  

  3. moderate

    Balanced in amount, number and opinion.

    He was a moderate person and had a beautiful calm voice when he spoke.

    Submitted by MaryC on December 29, 2016  

Matched Categories

British National Corpus

  1. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'moderate' in Adjectives Frequency: #827

How to pronounce moderate?

How to say moderate in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of moderate in Chaldean Numerology is: 5

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of moderate in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Examples of moderate in a Sentence

  1. Garry Tew:

    The health benefits of less time spent sitting depend on what you replace the sitting time with, for example, standing, light movement, moderate activity, vigorous activity, in my opinion, standing is probably only marginally better than sitting, and. . . moderate-to-vigorous purposeful exercise is a much better strategy for improving general fitness and health.

  2. Kahlil Gibran:

    In battling evil, excess is good for he who is moderate in announcing the truth is presenting half-truth. He conceals the other half out of fear of the people's wrath.

  3. William Winter:

    Bill and Hillary Clinton are part of the South, they understand the South and they understand the use of political strategies that will bring people in. They are moderate people, and most people in the South are moderate.

  4. Del Gobbo:

    A key finding is that physical activity among older adults does not have to be strenuous to reduce heart failure risk, we saw benefits for adults who walked at moderate or brisk pace( more than 2 or 3 miles per hour) and burned calories through leisure activity, like house or yard work, walking, engaging in outdoor activities, or other forms of physical activity, equivalent to about 30 minutes per day of moderate-intensity activity.

  5. La Rochefoucauld:

    Absence abates a moderate passion and intensifies a great one- as the wind blows out a candle but fans fire into flame. (Maxims)

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for moderate

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • معتدلArabic
  • moderatCatalan, Valencian
  • moderovat, mírnýCzech
  • moderieren, moderatGerman
  • moderar, mediocre, moderado, moderadaSpanish
  • tasoittaa, keskinkertainen, tasaantua, juontaa, sovitella, tasoittua, vaatimaton, kohtalainen, kohtuullistaa, moderoida, maltillinen, kohtuullinenFinnish
  • modérée, modéré, modérerFrench
  • réasúntaIrish
  • cuibheasachScottish Gaelic
  • मध्यमHindi
  • moderato, moderareItalian
  • gematigd, doorsnee, milderen, matigen, gematigde, modereren, temperen, middelmatig, bemiddelen, matigDutch
  • umiarkowanyPolish
  • moderadoPortuguese
  • mijlocie, moderată, modera, moderat, mediu, mijlociu, centrist, centristă, mediocră, mediocruRomanian
  • средний, умеренный, посредственный, заурядныйRussian
  • மிதமானTamil
  • మోస్తరుTelugu
  • ılımlıTurkish
  • помірнийUkrainian
  • اعتدال پسندUrdu

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"moderate." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 3 Dec. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/moderate>.

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    used of men; markedly masculine in appearance or manner
    • A. omnifarious
    • B. arbitrary
    • C. butch
    • D. unsealed

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