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noun ex·po·nent \ik-ˈspō-nənt, ˈek-ˌ\

Simple Definition of exponent

  • : someone who supports a particular cause, belief, etc.

  • : someone who is known for a particular method, style, etc.

  • mathematics : a symbol that is written above and to the right of a number to show how many times the number is to be multiplied by itself

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of exponent

  1. 1 :  a symbol written above and to the right of a mathematical expression to indicate the operation of raising to a power

  2. 2 a :  one that expounds or interprets b :  one that champions, practices, or exemplifies

Examples of exponent in a sentence

  1. She has become one of America's foremost exponents of the romantic style in interior design.

  2. The exponent 3 in 103 indicates 10 x 10 x 10.

Did You Know?

You probably won't be surprised to learn that "exponent" shares an ancestor with "proponent" - and indeed, the Latin ponere ("to put") is at the root of both terms. "Exponent" descends from "exponere" ("to explain" or "to set forth"), which joins "ponere" with "ex-" ("out"). "Proponent" traces to "proponere" ("to display" or "to declare"), from "ponere" and "pro-" ("before"). "Proponent" can describe someone who offers a proposal (it's related to "propose," which also ultimately comes from "proponere"), but today it usually means "one who argues in favor of something." "Exponent" can also refer to someone who is an advocate, but it tends to refer especially to someone who stands out as a shining representative of something, and in addition it has retained its earlier meaning of "one who expounds."

Origin and Etymology of exponent

Latin exponent-, exponens, present participle of exponere — more at expose

First Known Use: 1706

Other Mathematics and Statistics Terms

EXPONENT Defined for Kids


noun ex·po·nent \ik-ˈspō-nənt\

Definition of exponent for Students

  1. :  a numeral written above and to the right of a number to show how many times the number is to be used as a factor <The exponent 3 in 103 indicates 10 × 10 × 10.>

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