1

differential

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Definition of differential

1. 1a :  of, relating to, or constituting a difference :  distinguishing differential characteristicsb :  making a distinction between individuals or classes differential tax ratesc :  based on or resulting from a differentiald :  functioning or proceeding differently or at a different rate differential melting

2. 2 mathematics :  being, relating to, or involving a differential (see 2differential 1) or differentiation

3. 3 physics a :  relating to quantitative differences (as of motion or pressure)b :  producing effects by reason of quantitative differences

Examples of differential in a Sentence

1. did away with differential pay scales for men and women doing the same work

Origin and Etymology of differential

see 1different

First Known Use: 1615

2

differential

noun dif·fer·en·tial

Definition of differential

1. 1 mathematics a :  the product (see product 1) of the derivative of a function of one variable by the increment of the independent variableb :  a sum of products in which each product consists of a partial derivative of a given function of several variables multiplied by the corresponding increment and which contains as many products as there are independent variables in the function

2. 2 :  a difference between comparable individuals or classes a price differential; also :  the amount of such a difference

3. 3a :  a drivetrain gear assembly connecting two collinear shafts or axles (such as those of the rear wheels of an automobile) and permitting one shaft to revolve faster than the other a locking rear differentialb :  a case covering such an assembly

Origin and Etymology of differential

see 1different

First Known Use: 1871

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Definition of differential for English Language Learners

• : relating to or based on a difference : treating some people or groups differently from others

noun

Definition of differential for English Language Learners

• : a difference between people or things

• : a gear or an arrangement of gears in a vehicle that allows one wheel to turn faster than another when the vehicle is going around a curve

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Medical Definition of differential

1. 1:  of, relating to, or constituting a difference differential birth rates in different economic levels

2. 2:  making a distinction between individuals or classes differential cell counts differential staining

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threshold

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the point at which something begins

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