AskDefine | Define moratorium

Dictionary Definition



1 a legally authorized postponement before some obligation must be discharged
2 suspension of an ongoing activity [also: moratoria (pl)]

User Contributed Dictionary



First attested 1875, from neuter of moratorius "delaying", from morari "to delay," from mora "delay." The word had been written in italics up until 1914. See also moratory.


  1. An authorization to a debtor, permitting temporary suspension of payments.
  2. A suspension of an ongoing activity
    Canada may put a moratorium on cloning for research.


Extensive Definition

Moratorium may refer to:
moratorium in German: Moratorium
moratorium in Spanish: Moratoria
moratorium in French: Moratoire
moratorium in Hungarian: Transzfermoratórium
moratorium in Indonesian: Moratorium
moratorium in Italian: Moratoria
moratorium in Japanese: モラトリアム
moratorium in Korean: 지급 유예
moratorium in Dutch: Moratorium
moratorium in Norwegian: Moratorium
moratorium in Polish: Moratorium
moratorium in Swedish: Moratorium

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

afterthought, bind, block, blockage, bureaucratic delay, cancellation, delay, delayage, delayed reaction, detention, double take, dragging, freeze, grace period, halt, hang-up, hiatus, hindrance, holdup, interim, jam, lag, lagging, logjam, obliteration, obstruction, paperasserie, pause, postponement, red tape, red-tapeism, red-tapery, reprieve, respite, retardance, retardation, slow-up, slowdown, slowness, stay, stay of execution, stop, stoppage, suspense, suspension, tie-up, time lag, wait, write-off
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