Ask Difference

Moment vs. Movement — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Updated on October 12, 2023
Moment refers to a brief period of time. Movement is an act or process of changing physical location or position.
Moment vs. Movement — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Moment and Movement

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Key Differences

Moment commonly describes a brief, fleeting period of time that often holds significance. It can be as short as a second or as long as a few minutes. In contrast, Movement generally pertains to the act or process of changing physical location or position, or a group of people with shared aims.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 12, 2023
While a moment might be remembered for its emotional or historical importance, a movement can shape history, culture, or society over an extended period. The moment a baby takes its first breath is deeply personal, whereas a movement for climate change seeks broader societal shifts.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 12, 2023
In physics, a moment refers to the turning effect of a force. However, this specific meaning diverges from its typical usage in daily life. On the other hand, movement in horology, the science of measuring time, refers to the inner mechanism of a clock or watch.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 12, 2023
A moment in time can also be an opportunity or an instance that’s suitable for a specific purpose, like a moment of reflection. Meanwhile, movement isn’t confined to physical shifts; it can also describe a trend or development in arts, politics, or philosophy.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 12, 2023
To encapsulate, while both moment and movement have multiple meanings, the former predominantly describes brief periods, and the latter, change in position or societal shifts.
Tayyaba Rehman
Oct 12, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Primary Definition

A brief period of time.
Act or process of changing position.
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Contextual Usage

Can denote an opportunity or instance.
Refers to societal or artistic shifts.
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Fields of Application

Daily life, physics.
Daily life, horology, societal trends.
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Time Frame

Fleeting.
Can be prolonged.
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Broader Implications

Often personal or emotional significance.
Can impact history, culture, or society.
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Compare with Definitions

Moment

A very brief period of time.
I'll be with you in a moment.
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Movement

The act or process of moving.
The movement of the troops was swift.
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Moment

Significant importance due to being likely to influence future events.
She knew at that moment that she had won.
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Movement

The mechanism of a watch or clock.
The movement of this watch is precise.
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Moment

A brief, indefinite interval of time.
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May 25, 2020

Movement

An act of moving
A slight movement of the body
The free movement of labour
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Moment

A specific point in time, especially the present time
He is not here at the moment.
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Movement

A change or development
The movement towards greater sexual equality
Movements in the underlying financial markets
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Moment

A point in time that is gratifying or noteworthy
Even working on a dictionary has its moments.
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May 25, 2020

Movement

A group of people working together to advance their shared political, social, or artistic ideas
The labour movement
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Moment

An occasion affording an opportunity
Viewed the blunder as a teachable moment.
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Movement

A principal division of a longer musical work, self-sufficient in terms of key, tempo, and structure
The slow movement of his violin concerto
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May 25, 2020

Moment

A particular period of importance, influence, or significance in a series of events or developments
A great moment in history.
Waiting for her big moment.
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May 25, 2020

Movement

An act of defecation.
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Moment

Outstanding significance or value; importance
A discovery of great moment.
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Movement

The act or an instance of moving; a change in place or position.
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Moment

A brief period of time that is characterized by a quality, such as excellence, suitability, or distinction
A lackluster performance that nevertheless had its moments.
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Movement

A particular manner of moving.
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Moment

An essential or constituent element, as of a complex idea.
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Movement

A change in the location of troops, ships, or aircraft for tactical or strategic purposes.
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Moment

A phase or aspect of a logically developing process.
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Movement

A series of actions and events taking place over a period of time and working to foster a principle or policy
A movement toward world peace.
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Moment

The product of a quantity, such as force or mass, and its perpendicular distance from a reference point.
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Movement

An organized effort by supporters of a common goal
A leader of the labor movement.
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Moment

The tendency to cause rotation about a point or axis.
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Movement

A tendency or trend
A movement toward larger kitchens.
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Moment

(Statistics) The expected value of a positive integer power of a random variable. The first moment of a random variable is the mean of its probability distribution.
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Movement

A change in the market price of a security or commodity.
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Moment

A brief, unspecified amount of time.
Wait a moment, while I lock the front door.
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Movement

An evacuation of the bowels.
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Moment

The smallest portion of time; an instant.
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Movement

The matter so evacuated.
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Moment

(figurative) Weight or importance.
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Movement

The suggestion or illusion of motion in a painting, sculpture, or design.
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Moment

Ellipsis of moment of force
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Movement

The progression of events in the development of a literary plot.
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Moment

A definite period of time, specifically one-tenth of a point, or one-fortieth or one-fiftieth of an hour.
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Movement

The rhythmical or metrical structure of a poetic composition.
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Moment

A petit mal episode; such a spell.
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Movement

(Music) A self-contained section of an extended composition.
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Moment

(colloquial) A fit; a brief tantrum.
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Movement

(Linguistics) In generative grammar, a transformation in which a constituent in one part of a syntactic structure is copied or displaced into a different location, creating a new structure.
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Moment

(math) An infinitesimal change in a varying quantity; an increment or decrement.
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Movement

A mechanism, such as the works of a watch, that produces or transmits motion.
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May 25, 2020

Moment

(math) A quantitative measure of the shape of a set of points.
If the points represent mass, then the zeroth moment is the total mass, the first moment divided by the total mass is the center of mass, and the second moment is the rotational inertia.
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May 25, 2020

Movement

Physical motion between points in space.
I saw a movement in that grass on the hill.
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Moment

(As in "X moment") An embarrassing event, supposed to be characteristic of some person, group, or situation.
Woman moment
Reddit moment
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Movement

(engineering) A system or mechanism for transmitting motion of a definite character, or for transforming motion, such as the wheelwork of a watch.
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Moment

A minute portion of time; a point of time; an instant; as, at that very moment.
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye.
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Movement

The impression of motion in an artwork, painting, novel etc.
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Moment

Impulsive power; force; momentum.
The moments or quantities of motion in bodies.
Touch, with lightest moment of impulse,His free will.
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Movement

A trend in various fields or social categories, a group of people with a common ideology who try together to achieve certain general goals
The labor movement has been struggling in America since the passage of the Taft-Hartley act in 1947.
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May 25, 2020

Moment

Importance, as in influence or effect; consequence; weight or value; consideration.
Matters of great moment.
It is an abstruse speculation, but also of far less moment and consequence of us than the others.
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Movement

(music) A large division of a larger composition.
Beethoven's movements
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Moment

An essential element; a deciding point, fact, or consideration; an essential or influential circumstance.
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Movement

(music) Melodic progression, accentual character, tempo or pace.
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Moment

An infinitesimal change in a varying quantity; an increment or decrement.
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Movement

(aviation) An instance of an aircraft taking off or landing.
Albuquerque International Sunport serviced over 200,000 movements last year.
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Moment

Tendency, or measure of tendency, to produce motion, esp. motion about a fixed point or axis.
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Movement

(baseball) The deviation of a pitch from ballistic flight.
The movement on his cutter was devastating.
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Moment

A particular point in time;
The moment he arrived the party began
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Movement

(bridge) A pattern in which pairs change opponents and boards move from table to table in duplicate bridge.
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Moment

An indefinitely short time;
Wait just a moment
It only takes a minute
In just a bit
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Movement

An act of emptying the bowels.
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Moment

At this time;
The disappointments of the here and now
She is studying at the moment
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Movement

(obsolete) Motion of the mind or feelings; emotion.
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Moment

Having important effects or influence;
Decisions of great consequence are made by the president himself
Virtue is of more moment that security
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Movement

The act of moving in space; change of place or posture; motion; as, the movement of an army in marching or maneuvering; the movement of a wheel or a machine.
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Moment

The moment of a couple is the product of its force and the distance between its opposing forces
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Movement

Manner or style of moving; as, a slow, or quick, or sudden, movement.
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Moment

The n-th moment of a distribution is the expected value of the n-th power of the deviations from a fixed value
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Movement

Transference, by any means, from one situation to another; a change of situation; progress toward a goal; advancement; as, after months of fruitless discussion there was finally some movement toward an agreement.
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Moment

An appropriate time for a particular action.
This is your moment to shine.
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Oct 12, 2023

Movement

Motion of the mind or feelings; emotion.
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May 25, 2020

Moment

The turning effect of a force.
The lever has a longer moment arm.
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Movement

The rhythmical progression, pace, and tempo of a piece.
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Moment

A particular stage in an event or process.
It was a great moment in history.
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Movement

A system of mechanism for transmitting motion of a definite character, or for transforming motion; as, the wheelwork of a watch; as, a seventeen jewel movement.
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May 25, 2020

Movement

A more or less organized effort by many people to achieve some goal, especially a social or artistic goal; as, the women's liberation movement; the progressive movement in architecture.
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May 25, 2020

Movement

A change of position that does not entail a change of location;
The reflex motion of his eyebrows revealed his surprise
Movement is a sign of life
An impatient move of his hand
Gastrointestinal motility
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May 25, 2020

Movement

A natural event that involves a change in the position or location of something
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Movement

The act of changing location from one place to another;
Police controlled the motion of the crowd
The movement of people from the farms to the cities
His move put him directly in my path
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Movement

A group of people with a common ideology who try together to achieve certain general goals;
He was a charter member of the movement
Politicians have to respect a mass movement
He led the national liberation front
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Movement

A major self-contained part of a symphony or sonata;
The second movement is slow and melodic
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Movement

A series of actions advancing a principle or tending toward a particular end;
He supported populist campaigns
They worked in the cause of world peace
The team was ready for a drive toward the pennant
The movement to end slavery
Contributed to the war effort
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Movement

An optical illusion of motion produced by viewing a rapid succession of still pictures of a moving object;
The cinema relies on apparent motion
The succession of flashing lights gave an illusion of movement
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Movement

A euphemism for defecation;
He had a bowel movement
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Movement

A general tendency to change (as of opinion);
Not openly liberal but that is the trend of the book
A broad movement of the electorate to the right
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Movement

The driving and regulating parts of a mechanism (as of a watch or clock);
It was an expensive watch with a diamond movement
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Movement

The act of changing the location of something;
The movement of cargo onto the vessel
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Movement

A change or development in a particular direction.
The movement toward sustainable energy is growing.
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Movement

A group of people working together to advance shared political or social ideas.
The Civil Rights Movement was pivotal in American history.
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Movement

A principal division of a musical work.
The second movement of the symphony was particularly stirring.
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Common Curiosities

Is every movement significant?

Not necessarily. Movements can vary in size and impact.
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Can a moment be measured precisely?

While "moment" often suggests a brief period, its precise length can be subjective.
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Can a moment last longer than a second?

Yes, a moment can represent any short span of time, not just a second.
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What’s the difference between a social moment and a movement?

A social moment is a brief event or period, while a movement is a prolonged effort to enact societal change.
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Can a moment be anticipated?

Yes, moments can be both unexpected or eagerly awaited.
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Is a dance considered a movement?

A dance consists of multiple movements, each being a change in position or direction.
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Can a movement last forever?

Most movements have a duration, but their effects or changes might persist.
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Is a moment always a short time?

Generally, yes. However, its exact duration can vary based on context.
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Is movement only physical?

No, movement can represent physical shifts, artistic trends, or societal changes.
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Do all movements lead to change?

Not all movements achieve their goals, but many can influence or signify change.
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Are moments always memorable?

Not always. While some moments are significant, others can be ordinary or easily forgotten.
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Do all clocks have a movement?

Yes, in horology, movement refers to the inner mechanism driving a clock or watch.
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Can a moment be extended?

While moments suggest brevity, expressions like "prolong the moment" imply an attempt to make it last.
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Can one be part of multiple movements?

Yes, one can participate in or support multiple movements simultaneously.
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Which is more transient, a moment or a movement?

A moment is typically more transient than a movement.
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Oct 12, 2023

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to askdifference.com. As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.

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