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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce maxim (audio)

Dictionary definition of maxim

A concise expression of a general truth or rule of conduct, often in the form of a proverb or aphorism.
"The maxim 'Honesty is the best policy' guided his actions."

Detailed meaning of maxim

Maxims are often passed down through generations and can be found in the wisdom of many cultures. They are often used to express a common experience or give advice, for example, "Honesty is the best policy" is a maxim that advises people to be truthful in their interactions with others. The maxim is a tool in the field of ethics and logic, as it expresses general truth that can be applied in a variety of situations.

Example sentences containing maxim

1. They lived their life by the maxim, "Carpe Diem" - seize the day.
2. The wise elder shared a maxim about the importance of patience.
3. They found inspiration in the maxim, "Actions speak louder than words."
4. The motivational speaker shared a maxim to encourage perseverance.
5. The book was filled with insightful maxims about success and happiness.
6. They engraved the family motto as a maxim on their coat of arms.
7. The maxim "Honesty is the best policy" guided their ethical choices.

History and etymology of maxim

The noun 'maxim' has its origins in the Latin word 'maxima,' the feminine form of 'maximus,' meaning 'greatest' or 'largest.' In Latin, 'maxima' was used to refer to important principles, rules, or sayings that were considered the 'greatest' or most significant in terms of conveying wisdom or guiding behavior. The etymology of 'maxim' highlights the idea that these concise expressions represent the 'greatest' or most essential truths or rules of conduct, often taking the form of proverbs or aphorisms. Over time, 'maxim' came to signify any succinct and universally accepted statement of wisdom or moral guidance, capturing the essence of a general truth in a compact and memorable form.

Quiz: Find the meaning of maxim

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Further usage examples of maxim

1. They reflected on the maxim, "Knowledge is power," in their pursuit of education.
2. The maxim "Love conquers all" offered hope during difficult times.
3. They shared a maxim about the value of kindness and compassion.
4. The maxim "You reap what you sow" reminded them of the importance of their actions.
5. They embraced the maxim, "Where there's a will, there's a way," in overcoming challenges.
6. The maxim "Look before you leap" reminded them to consider the consequences.
7. They quoted the maxim, "Patience is a virtue," during moments of frustration.
8. The maxim "Think before you speak" encouraged mindful communication.
9. They followed the maxim, "To thine own self be true," in making authentic choices.
10. The maxim "Actions have consequences" reminded them to consider their decisions carefully.
11. They found wisdom in the maxim, "A stitch in time saves nine," in preventing future problems.
12. The maxim "The early bird catches the worm" motivated them to start their day early.
13. They lived by the maxim, "Treat others as you wish to be treated," in fostering positive relationships.



aphorism, falsehood, fallacy, misconception


Wisdom and Understanding, Tradition and Heritage, Knowledge and Wisdom

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