de·nom·i·na·tor | \ di-ˈnä-mə-ˌnā-tər \

Definition of denominator 

1 mathematics : the part of a fraction that is below the line and that functions as the divisor of the numerator

2a : a shared trait a common denominator

b : the average level (as of taste or opinion) : standard manufacturers catering to a safely low denominator of public taste Time

Examples of denominator in a Sentence

In the fraction 2/3 the numerator is 2 and the denominator is 3.

Recent Examples on the Web

As the workforce grows, the denominator increases so that the ratio goes down. Liya Palagashvili, WSJ, "Don’t Be So Sure the Gig Is Up," 12 June 2018 This process allows for extremely accurate reverse engineering of the denominator representing the total player base for an Achievement percentage. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Valve leaks Steam game player counts; we have the numbers," 6 July 2018 As long as the angle is between 0 and 90 degrees, the stuff in the denominator will be bigger than just μs such that the force will be smaller at an angle. Rhett Allain, WIRED, "The Surprisingly Cool Physics of Pushing a Block Against a Wall," 11 June 2018 Affordable to most, a burger and fries spiked with ketchup made a democratic, delicious, lowest-common-denominator meal. Amy Bentley,, "Is ketchup the perfect complement to the American diet?," 10 June 2018 More candidates competing for fewer votes has left Democrats grappling with both a numerator and denominator problem in Orange County. Ronald Brownstein, CNN, "How Democrats' California dream got twisted," 5 June 2018 But this reflects the denominator rising, not the numerator shrinking: investment relative to GDP is in line with 1990s levels. The Economist, "Six muddles about share buy-backs," 31 May 2018 This can lead to some really bad programming choices by certain hosts, who go for the easy denominator of being provocative instead of genuine. Phil Rosenthal,, "Matt Spiegel thanks WSCR listeners; explains 'a new boss gets to do what he wants'," 21 Mar. 2018 Yet, this lowest-common-denominator rock has allowed the group to chart on both Billboard's rock and pop charts, with the Grammys nominating their music for awards in both genre categories, which only expands their opportunities for exposure. Maeve Mcdermott, USA TODAY, "News & views: How Imagine Dragons' faceless rock music became the genre's future," 20 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'denominator.' 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 denominator

circa 1542, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for denominator

see denominate

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Statistics for denominator

Last Updated

24 Aug 2018

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Time Traveler for denominator

The first known use of denominator was circa 1542

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English Language Learners Definition of denominator

mathematics : the number in a fraction that is below the line and that divides the number above the line


de·nom·i·na·tor | \ di-ˈnä-mə-ˌnā-tər \

Kids Definition of denominator

: the part of a fraction that is below the line The number 5 is the denominator of the fraction ³/₅.

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Comments on denominator

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