knot theory


: a branch of topology concerned with the properties and classification of mathematical knots
knot theorist noun

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web With its suggestion of elegant simplicity within the world of knots, it’s become one of the most high-profile problems in knot theory. Leila Sloman, Quanta Magazine, 2 Feb. 2023 Quantum computing uses a similarly computationally difficult trick, thanks to knot theory. Eric Wolff, Discover Magazine, 13 Dec. 2010 This idea was behind one of the biggest recent results in knot theory. Quanta Magazine, 31 Oct. 2022 In one noteworthy discovery, deep learning helped mathematicians develop a formula related to knot theory, the study of 3D curves that cannot be untangled. Jonathan Vanian, Fortune, 8 Dec. 2021 The reason this method should work comes down to the math of knot theory. Eugenia Cheng, WSJ, 8 July 2021 The mathematics of knot theory says that a simple loop and a trefoil are fundamentally different knots. George Hart, Scientific American, 22 Jan. 2013 The dream began in the 1860s with an ingenious knot theory of nature. Natalie Wolchover, Scientific American, 11 Dec. 2013 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'knot theory.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1981, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of knot theory was in 1981

Dictionary Entries Near knot theory

Cite this Entry

“Knot theory.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jun. 2023.

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