mul·​ti·​pli·​ca·​tion ˌməl-tə-plə-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce multiplication (audio)
: the act or process of multiplying : the state of being multiplied
: a mathematical operation that at its simplest is an abbreviated process of adding an integer to zero a specified number of times and that is extended to other numbers in accordance with laws that are valid for integers
: any of various mathematical operations that are analogous in some way to multiplication of the real numbers but are defined for other or larger sets of elements (such as complex numbers, vectors, matrices, or functions)

Example Sentences

Students are learning multiplication and division. a disease causing uncontrolled multiplication of cells an uncontrolled multiplication of cells
Recent Examples on the Web Matrix multiplication is one of the most fundamental and ubiquitous operations in all of mathematics. Ben Brubaker, Quanta Magazine, 23 Nov. 2022 Salah’s staff have also started wrapping each individual mango on the tree in paper—torn from fashion magazines, English homework, multiplication tables, and receipts—to keep away insects. Tim Mcdonnell, Quartz, 27 Oct. 2022 There’s a buzz of fertility, like bees on a hive, linked through cellular multiplication and blood. Garth Greenwell, The New Yorker, 6 June 2022 So, between grammar charts, multiplication tables and guides to the three branches of government, Mrs. Lenahan displays messages of encouragement and hope. Hannah Drown, cleveland, 30 Sep. 2022 During this year’s redistricting process, this multiplication-by-division argument was delivered by Carlton Soules, a former council member who served as one of the District 10 redistricting committee representatives. Gilbert Garcia, San Antonio Express-News, 14 June 2022 Nana, like the locomotive or the market in other novels, is an engine of multiplication. Namwali Serpell, The New York Review of Books, 6 July 2022 There was Rojelio Torres, who had suddenly become serious about learning his multiplication and division. New York Times, 10 July 2022 Don't forget the handy multiplication tables that can be found within! Fox News, 27 Aug. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'multiplication.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English multiplicacioun, from Anglo-French multiplicacion, from Latin multiplication-, multiplicatio, from multiplicare to multiply

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of multiplication was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near multiplication

Cite this Entry

“Multiplication.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition


mul·​ti·​pli·​ca·​tion ˌməl-tə-plə-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce multiplication (audio)
: the act or process of multiplying
: a mathematical operation that takes two numbers and gives an answer equal to the sum of a column containing one of the numbers repeated the number of times of the other number
the multiplication of 8 and 3 is the same as the sum of 8+8+8
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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