calculus of variations

noun phrase

Definition of calculus of variations

: a branch of mathematics concerned with applying the methods of calculus to finding the maxima and minima of a function which depends for its values on another function or a curve

First Known Use of calculus of variations

1784, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of calculus of variations was in 1784

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Cite this Entry

“Calculus of variations.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 11 December 2019.

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