absolute value

noun

Definition of absolute value 

1 : a nonnegative number equal in numerical value to a given real number

2 : the positive square root of the sum of the squares of the real and imaginary parts of a complex number

Examples of absolute value in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

China also beat the United States in absolute value of national power in 2016. Simon Saradzhyan, Washington Post, "Is Vladimir Putin’s Russia in decline? We figured out how to measure ‘national power.’," 20 June 2018 If safety were an absolute value in transportation policy, the national highway speed limit would be fifteen miles an hour. William Finnegan, The New Yorker, "Can Andy Byford Save the Subways?," 2 July 2018 All four models show that Russia has lagged behind China and India in absolute values of national power. Simon Saradzhyan, Washington Post, "Is Vladimir Putin’s Russia in decline? We figured out how to measure ‘national power.’," 20 June 2018 Democracy, for Mises, was not an absolute value to be respected at all times. Patrick Iber, The New Republic, "How neoliberalism shapes the global economy and limits the power of democracies," 23 Apr. 2018 That absolute value became their dependent variable, the thing that changed over time. Adam Rogers, WIRED, "Maybe Election Polls Aren't Broken After All," 12 Mar. 2018 In this way, the combined index B is the sum of the absolute value of the sub-indexes divided by the number of parties in the election. Bloomberg.com, "Mexican Election Coverage," 12 Feb. 2018 The absolute value of a triple Salchow doesn't change from skater to skater, and there are clear guidelines about how to score the execution of that jump. Anchorage Daily News, "Five myths about figure skating," 9 Feb. 2018 What Burns and Novick prove yet again is the catharsis that can be found in telling our stories to one another – and the absolute value in getting these stories right. Author: Hank Stuever, Alaska Dispatch News, "Yes, America, PBS’ ‘The Vietnam War’ is required viewing – all 18 hours of it," 18 Sep. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'absolute value.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of absolute value

1803, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about absolute value

Share absolute value

Statistics for absolute value

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for absolute value

The first known use of absolute value was in 1803

See more words from the same year

Comments on absolute value

What made you want to look up absolute value? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

one that holds something together

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!