math·​e·​mat·​i·​cal | \ ˌmath-ˈma-ti-kəl How to pronounce mathematical (audio) , ˌma-thə- \
variants: or less commonly mathematic \ ˌmath-​ˈma-​tik How to pronounce mathematic (audio) , ˌma-​thə-​ \

Definition of mathematical

1 : of, relating to, or according with mathematics
2a : rigorously exact : precise
3 : possible but highly improbable only a mathematical chance

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Other Words from mathematical

mathematically \ ˌmath-​ˈma-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce mathematically (audio) , ˌma-​thə-​ \ adverb

Examples of mathematical in a Sentence

They recorded the changes with mathematical precision. The team has only a mathematical chance of making the play-offs.
Recent Examples on the Web The mathematical absurdity still makes my mouth water. Geoff Edgers, Washington Post, "A dozen albums for a penny? I’ve still got mine, and plenty of time to listen.," 2 July 2020 In 2018, experts said that the famous ancient site may have been built using Greek philosopher Pythagoras’ famous theorem two millennia before the mathematical equation was developed. Fox News, "Mysterious ring of Neolithic underground structures discovered near Stonehenge," 23 June 2020 The news is not well received by the members of the Committee on Public Safety, who essentially rule the empire, and Seldon is forced to stand trial for treason, along with a brilliant young mathematical protegé named Gaal. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Apple gives us our first glimpse of Foundation, adapted from Asimov series," 22 June 2020 That’s an estimate, based on mathematical models, but the threat is clear. National Geographic, "On the hunt for the next deadly virus," 16 June 2020 Crucially, the team also added in mathematical calculations extrapolating from the theory of quarks and gluons to predict the speed of sound in neutron stars (another measure of stiffness). Charlie Wood, Popular Science, "Why are big neutron stars like Tootsie Pops?," 5 June 2020 Early clues emerged after Corina Tarnita, a mathematical biologist at Princeton University, and her colleagues turned their attention to the cellular slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum. Quanta Magazine, "Out-of-Sync ‘Loners’ May Secretly Protect Orderly Swarms," 21 May 2020 Quick and other researchers used a mathematical analysis of 53 exoplanets in our galaxy, including those in the TRAPPIST-1 system about 39 light-years away, to determine if any of them could be ocean worlds, hypothetically. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Earth-like planets and ocean worlds could be common in our galaxy, studies say," 19 June 2020 Meanwhile, Jon Rahm again has a mathematical chance to overtake Rory McIlroy at No. 1 in the world ranking. Mark Heim |, al, "2020 RBC Heritage (6/18) live stream: How to watch online, TV info, time of PGA Tour event," 18 June 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for mathematical

Middle English mathematicalle, from Latin mathematicus, from Greek mathēmatikos, from mathēmat-, mathēma learning, mathematics, from manthanein to learn; probably akin to Goth mundon to pay attention

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Time Traveler for mathematical

Time Traveler

The first known use of mathematical was in the 15th century

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Statistics for mathematical

Last Updated

5 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Mathematical.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for mathematical


How to pronounce mathematical (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of mathematical

: of, relating to, or involving mathematics
: very exact or complete
: possible but very unlikely


math·​e·​mat·​i·​cal | \ ˌma-thə-ˈma-ti-kəl How to pronounce mathematical (audio) \

Kids Definition of mathematical

1 : of or relating to numbers, quantities, measurements, and the relations between them : of or relating to mathematics
2 : exact entry 1 mathematical precision

Other Words from mathematical

mathematically adverb

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