Definition of margin noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈmɑːdʒɪn//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈmɑːrdʒən//
    [countable] Parts of a book
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  1. 1the empty space at the side of a written or printed page the left-hand/right-hand margin a narrow/wide margin notes scribbled in the margin See related entries: Parts of a book
  2. 2[usually singular] the amount of time, or number of votes, etc. by which somebody wins something He won by a narrow margin. She beat the other runners by a margin of ten seconds. Members voted by a margin of 7–1 to become a public limited company.
  3. 3(business) = profit margin What are your average operating margins? a gross margin of 45%
  4. 4[usually singular] an extra amount of something such as time, space, money, etc. that you include in order to make sure that something is successful a safety margin The narrow gateway left me little margin for error as I reversed the car. see also margin of error
  5. 5(formal) the extreme edge or limit of a place the eastern margin of the Indian Ocean
  6. 6[usually plural] the part that is not included in the main part of a group or situation synonym fringe people living on the margins of society
  7. 7(Australian English, New Zealand English) an amount that is added to a basic wage, paid for special skill or responsibility
  8. Word Origin late Middle English: from Latin margo, margin- ‘edge’.Extra examples He had an 18-second margin over his nearest rival. He won by the narrowest of margins. Her book outsold his by almost a two-to-one margin. Higher productivity has enabled them to increase their profit margins. How does the company get by with such razor-thin margins? Leave a generous margin on the left. Price rises have eroded profit margins. Sales predictions are open to wide margins of error. She scribbled notes in the margin. She was not daunted by this substantial margin of defeat. She won by a clear margin. Start writing at the left-hand margin. The amendment passed by an overwhelming margin. The company relies on fat margins from luxury models. The device gives a greater margin of safety. The election is likely to be decided by razor-thin margins. The schedule left no margin for error. The winning margin was only 8 seconds. These manufacturers have high gross margins. They are operating at very low margins. They hope to improve their margins on computers. Today, average margins have slipped to just 4%. We have substantial reserves, which provide a good margin for uncertainties. We’re working to rather tight profit margins. He won by a narrow margin. The equipment has been designed to give an increased safety margin. The island is on the eastern margin of the Indian Ocean. These are desperate people, often homeless, living on the margins of society.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: margin

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