arith·​me·​tic | \ ə-ˈrith-mə-ˌtik How to pronounce arithmetic (audio) \

Definition of arithmetic

1a : a branch of mathematics that deals usually with the nonnegative real numbers including sometimes the transfinite cardinals and with the application of the operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division to them
b : a treatise on arithmetic

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Other Words from arithmetic

arithmetic \ ˌer-​ith-​ˈme-​tik How to pronounce arithmetic (audio) , ˌa-​rith \ or arithmetical \ -​ti-​kəl How to pronounce arithmetical (audio) \ adjective
arithmetically \ -​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce arithmetically (audio) \ adverb
arithmetician \ ə-​ˌrith-​mə-​ˈti-​shən How to pronounce arithmetician (audio) \ noun

Examples of arithmetic in a Sentence

a software program that will do the arithmetic for you I haven't actually done the arithmetic yet, but I suspect we're losing money on the deal.

Recent Examples on the Web

Their conjecture was also motivated by basic arithmetic. Quanta Magazine, "In the Universe of Equations, Virtually All Are Prime," 10 Dec. 2018 This new field — arithmetic geometry — is now one of deepest and far-ranging mathematical theories. Quanta Magazine, "The Subtle Art of the Mathematical Conjecture," 7 May 2019 Over the past few years, more and more paint companies have released chalkboard paint, allowing for far greater potential for the surface than classroom arithmetic or the announcing of the daily specials at your coffee bar. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "Everything You Need to Know About Chalkboard Paint," 29 Apr. 2019 Participants were asked to do several stressful tasks while being evaluated by two strangers, including giving a speech and doing mental arithmetic. Sue Shellenbarger, WSJ, "Your Lonely Child’s Path to a Happier Life," 30 Oct. 2018 The aim is to make every student proficient not only in reading, writing and arithmetic—but data. Douglas Belkin, WSJ, "UC Berkeley’s Fastest-Growing Class Is Data Science 101," 1 Nov. 2018 But the airport has also become a symbol of a less savory aspect of Turkey’s modern-day incarnation: its reckless disregard for arithmetic and the independence of critical government institutions. New York Times, "Turkey’s Economy Is So Hot That It May Face a Meltdown," 10 July 2018 Interestingly enough, Kruskal's tree theorem required non-finite mathmatics to prove, using advanced techniques such as transfinite arithmetic and ordinal numbers. Jay Bennett, Popular Mechanics, "Wrap Your Head Around the Enormity of the Number TREE(3)," 20 Oct. 2017 President Trump appears to believe that the same arithmetic that led Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to accommodate the U.S. on trade applies to the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party. Walter Russell Mead, WSJ, "Trump’s Instincts Triumph on Trade," 1 Oct. 2018

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

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First Known Use of arithmetic

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for arithmetic

Middle English arsmetrik, from Anglo-French arismatike, from Latin arithmetica, from Greek arithmētikē, from feminine of arithmētikos arithmetical, from arithmein to count, from arithmos number; akin to Old English rīm number, and perhaps to Greek arariskein to fit

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Statistics for arithmetic

Last Updated

7 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for arithmetic

The first known use of arithmetic was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of arithmetic

: a branch of mathematics that deals with numbers and their addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division
: the act or process of calculating a number


arith·​me·​tic | \ ə-ˈrith-mə-ˌtik How to pronounce arithmetic (audio) \

Kids Definition of arithmetic

1 : a science that deals with the addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of numbers
2 : an act or method of adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing

Other Words from arithmetic

arithmetic \ ˌer-​ith-​ˈme-​tik \ or arithmetical \ -​ti-​kəl \ adjective

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Comments on arithmetic

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characterized by aphorism

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