- enPR: mĕr'ĭt, IPA: /ˈmɛ.ɹɪt/
- Rhymes: -ɛɹɪt
- miter, mitre, remit, timer
From Middle English merite, from Old French merite, from Latin meritum ( “that which one deserves, just deserts; service, kindness, benefit, fault, blame, demerit, grounds, reason, worth, value, importance” ), neuter of meritus, past participle of mereō ( “I deserve, earn, gain, get, acquire” ), akin to Ancient Greek μέρος ( meros, “a part, lot, fate, destiny” ) .
Explanation of merit by Wordnet Dictionary
any admirable quality or attribute
- work of great merit
- Merit n. [F. mérite, L. meritum, fr. merere, mereri, to deserve, merit; prob. originally, to get a share; akin to Gr. part, fate, doom, to receive as one's portion. Cf. Market, Merchant, Mercer, Mercy.]
1. The quality or state of deserving well or ill; desert.
Here may men see how sin hath his merit. Chaucer.
Be it known, that we, the greatest, are misthought
For things that others do; and when we fall,
We answer other's merits in our name. Shak.
2. Esp. in a good sense: The quality or state of deserving well; worth; excellence.
Reputation is . . . oft got without merit, and lost without deserving. Shak.
To him the wit of Greece and Rome was known,
And every author's merit, but his own. Pope.
3. Reward deserved; any mark or token of excellence or approbation; as, “his teacher gave him ten merits”.
Those laurel groves, the merits of thy youth. Prior.
- Merit, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Merited; p. pr. & vb. n. Meriting.] [F. mériter, L. meritare, v. intens. fr. merere. See Merit, n.]
1. To earn by service or performance; to have a right to claim as reward; to deserve; sometimes, to deserve in a bad sense; as, “to merit punishment”. “This kindness merits thanks.” Shak.
2. To reward. [R. & Obs.] Chapman.
- Merit, v. i. To acquire desert; to gain value; to receive benefit; to profit. [Obs.] Beau. & Fl.
Definition of merit by GCIDE Dictionary