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as in: a nominal fee Define
insignificantly small
  • There’s also a nominal airport tax as you depart.
  • The insurance company proposes a nominal fee for all elective care so that patients will join the effort to eliminate unnecessary expense.

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  • Even your constant little heart need not take fright at such a nominal change.
    Austen, Jane  --  Mansfield Park
  • I know quite well that my brother gave it to your father - or rather he sold it to him for a nominal sum.
    Oppenheim, E. Phillips  --  The Vanished Messenger
  • Hadley’s charge will be merely nominal.
    London, Jack  --  Michael, Brother of Jerry
  • at a nominal price, or even getting it for nothing.
    Dickens, Charles  --  Our Mutual Friend
  • Part of the remainder she was obliged to expend in winter clothing, leaving only a nominal sum for the whole inclement season at hand.
    Hardy, Thomas  --  Tess of the d’Urbervilles - A Pure Woman
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as in: he's nominally in charge Define
in form or name, but not in reality
  • It was nominally written by the artist, but everyone suspects a ghostwriter did the bulk of the work.
  • He talks of 6% growth, but that is nominal growth. After adjusting for inflation, it is only 3%.

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  • "I think he has only been its nominal head for many years," said Anne.
    Montgomery, Lucy Maud  --  Anne Of Green Gables
  • The nominal interest is 6%, but it is compounded daily — making the real interest higher.
  • It was no nominal meal that we were going to make, but a vigorous reality.
    Dickens, Charles  --  Great Expectations
  • In a fortnight he was the nominal owner of sixteen thousand shares in a company of which only ten thousand actually existed.
    Oppenheim, E. Phillips  --  The Malefactor
  • As he spoke or thought thus, the door opened, and the superintendent of the finances, Fouquet, appeared before his nominal master.
    Dumas, Alexandre  --  Ten Years Later
  • He says that there can be no high civilization without enslavement of the masses, either nominal or real.
    Stowe, Harriet Beecher  --  Uncle Tom’s Cabin
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  • Those people may nominally be under our authority but they are not under our control.
    John Ringo  --  Live Free or Die
  • Manuela, Oscar’s mother, was nominally in charge, but she quickly fell into a funk.
    Joshua Davis  --  Spare Parts

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  • He was nominally a sixth grader.
    Pat Conroy  --  The Water is Wide
  • Nominally he is only an adjutant on Kutuzov’s staff, but he does everything alone.
    Leo Tolstoy  --  War and Peace
  • And our dinner hour is nominally (for we dine at all hours) five!
    Charles Dickens  --  Bleak House
  • Even your constant little heart need not take fright at such a nominal change.
    Jane Austen  --  Mansfield Park
  • Despite attending a nominally Christian school, I had not yet been inside a church—and I wasn’t about to dare the deed now.
    Yann Martel  --  Life of Pi
  • A nominal eastward direction-call it "east."
    Robert A. Heinlein  --  Tunnel In the Sky
  • Nominally the Security Officer’s department aside from clerks consists only of the bodyguard.
    Robert A. Heinlein  --  The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
  • So seventeen kids is nominal.
    Robert A. Heinlein  --  The Moon is a Harsh Mistress

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  • This is not a nominal outcome.
    Neal Stephenson  --  Snow Crash
  • Kohistan was infamous for banditry and had never been more than nominally under control of Islamabad.
    Greg Mortenson & David Oliver Relin  --  Three Cups of Tea
  • The police were stationed in Mukhtar’s home, nominally to protect her, and they listened to the entire interview.
    Nicholas D. Kristof  --  Half the Sky
  • Nominally, it would pass to Mrs. Tallis, but ultimately the success of the evening would be in Cecilia’s care.
    Ian McEwan  --  Atonement
  • And for what? A purely nominal political privilege that pays not one centavo and that most of them aren’t competent to use wisely anyhow.
    Robert A. Heinlein  --  Starship Troopers
  • Dear lady, could you bring yourself to play the nominal role of an old man’s folly?
    Robert A. Heinlein  --  The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
  • I was in terror that Mutchnik might have taken a notion to investigate in the Recorder’s Office and find out that a relation of Mrs. Einhorn had nominally owned the lot.
    Saul Bellow  --  The Adventures of Augie March
  • Though nominally included in the census of Christendom, he was still an alien to it.
    Herman Melville  --  Moby Dick
  • What do you call purely nominal?
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
  • I ate a quick lunch, rode subways and buses for an hour, then got a cab to take me out to the Westchester address of Evelyn, my nominal sister and hopeful jogger of memories.
    Roger Zelazny  --  Nine Princes in Amber
  • Is purely nominal.
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
  • So all about India, in the most remote places, as in the most public, you find some knot of grizzled servitors in nominal charge of an old lady who is more or less curtained and hid away in a bullock-cart.
    Rudyard Kipling  --  Kim
  • A shaven, crouching Balti, who had come down with the horses, and who was nominally some sort of degraded Buddhist, fawned upon the priest, and in thick gutturals besought the Holy One to sit at the horseboys’ fire.
    Rudyard Kipling  --  Kim
  • It was just a peewee, of course, less than two kilotons nominal yield, with tamper and implosion squeeze to produce results from a less-than-critical mass — but then who wants to be bunk mates with a cosmic catastrophe?
    Robert A. Heinlein  --  Starship Troopers
  • The Ivy League business was, of course, an imbecilic illusion… The University Residence Club was only one small cut above a flophouse, differing from Bowery accommodations to the extent of nominal privacy in the form of a locked door.
    William Styron  --  Sophie’s Choice
  • They were presided over nominally by my mother, but really by Mr. Murdstone and his sister, who were always present, and found them a favourable occasion for giving my mother lessons in that miscalled firmness, which was the bane of both our lives.
    Charles Dickens  --  David Copperfield
  • The Thain was the master of the Shire-moot, and captain of the Shire-muster and the Hobbitry-in-arms, but as muster and moot were only held in times of emergency, which no longer occurred, the Thainship had ceased to be more than a nominal dignity.
    J.R.R. Tolkien  --  The Fellowship of the Ring
  • The Liberal Government (clearly by collusion) was beaten by the Conservatives, though the latter were nominally much in the minority.
    William Morris  --  News from Nowhere
  • With Dagmer Cleftjaw along as well, his command would be purely nominal.
    George R.R. Martin  --  A Clash of Kings
  • Jenks took a breath, nominally reflecting.
    James Patterson  --  1st to Die
  • It was no nominal meal that we were going to make, but a vigorous reality.
    Charles Dickens  --  Great Expectations
  • You shall be Mrs. Rochester — both virtually and nominally.
    Charlotte Bronte  --  Jane Eyre
  • Although the road along its greater part had been as good as any turnpike-road in the country, it was nominally only a byway.
    Thomas Hardy  --  Far from the Madding Crowd
  • Nominally for failing to report to a police station within the statutory period after release from prison.
    John Le Carre  --  The Spy Who Came In From The Cold
  • He says that there can be no high civilization without enslavement of the masses, either nominal or real.
    Harriet Beecher Stowe  --  Uncle Tom’s Cabin
  • It’s more work in terms of reaching the top of the mountain, but that’s only the nominal goal.
    Robert M. Pirsig  --  Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
  • The state paid a nominal amount for each pint of blood to replace the constantly undersupplied reserves.
    W. William Winokur  --  The Perfect Game
  • Of course they have, nominally.
    Boris Pasternak  --  Doctor Zhivago
  • CUSINS [patiently] No. I have been making a night of it with the nominal head of this household: that is all.
    George Bernard Shaw  --  Major Barbara
  • Though loyal to Washington and the administration, Adams was but nominally a Federalist, refusing steadfastly to be, or to be perceived as, a party man.
    David McCullough  --  John Adams
  • Though nominally a Catholic, I had been raised by Uncle Lamb, the completest of agnostics, and had only the vaguest idea of the significance of a rosary.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • The Lacedaemonians, to gratify their allies, and yet preserve the semblance of an adherence to their ancient institutions, had recourse to the flimsy subterfuge of investing Lysander with the real power of admiral, under the nominal title of vice-admiral.
    Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, & John Jay  --  The Federalist Papers
  • I HAVE recognized that the cousinship was merely nominal, since we met as total strangers.
    Thomas Hardy  --  Jude the Obscure
  • Their lawyer had persuaded the judge to reduce the bail to a nominal fee, but they had spent three days in jail in the interim.
    Alexs Pate  --  Amistad
  • Xenophon, who was in nominal charge of the expeditionary force, stood at the lip above the Aracthus and watched as the men climbed and the equipment was hauled up.
    Megan Whalen Turner  --  Queen of Attolia
  • You see, he, Dignam, I mean, didn’t serve any notice of the assignment on the company at the time and nominally under the act the mortgagee can’t recover on the policy.
    James Joyce  --  Ulysses
  • Were the executive magistrate, or the judges, not independent of the legislature in this particular, their independence in every other would be merely nominal.
    Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, & John Jay  --  The Federalist Papers
  • But, though these barbarians dined in the cabin, and nominally lived there; still, being anything but sedentary in their habits, they were scarcely ever in it except at mealtimes, and just before sleeping-time, when they passed through it to their own peculiar quarters.
    Herman Melville  --  Moby Dick
  • He could not realize their nominal closeness.
    Thomas Hardy  --  Jude the Obscure
  • Eventually, I got out of bed and slowly resumed my daily routines, by which I mean the stringent essentials a person must tend to in order to remain functional and nominally civil.
    Khaled Hosseini  --  And The Mountains Echoed
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