Definition of calculus
calculiplay \-ˌlī, -ˌlē\ also
1a : a method of computation or calculation in a special notation (as of logic or symbolic logic)b : the mathematical methods comprising differential and integral calculus —often used with the
2 : calculation < … even political conservatives agree that an economic calculus must give way to a strategic consciousness when national or global security is at stake. — Stephen H. Schneider>
3a : a concretion usually of mineral salts around organic material found especially in hollow organs or ductsb : 1tartar 2
4 : a system or arrangement of intricate or interrelated parts
Examples of calculus in a sentence
<by my calculus the more efficient air conditioner will have paid for itself within a span of five years>
Did You Know?
In Latin calculus meant “pebble.” Because the Romans used pebbles to do addition and subtraction on a counting board, the word became associated with computation. Other English derivatives include calculator and calculation. Calculus itself has been borrowed into English as a medical term that refers to masses of matter in the body such as kidney stones (a straightforward extension of the meaning “pebble”) and to refer to a system of mathematical computation.
Origin and Etymology of calculus
Latin, stone (used in reckoning)
First Known Use: 1666
CALCULUS Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of calculus for English Language Learners
: an advanced branch of mathematics that deals mostly with rates of change and with finding lengths, areas, and volumes
CALCULUS Defined for Kids
Definition of calculus for Students
: a branch of mathematics that deals mostly with rates of change and with finding lengths, areas, and volumes
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up calculus? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).