plus or minus


Definition of plus or minus

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: indicating a quantity whose algebraically positive and negative values serve to bracket a range of values either alone or when added to and subtracted from a given number measured with an accuracy of plus or minus 3 feet

plus or minus


Definition of plus or minus (Entry 2 of 2)

: more or less, approximately a dance for singles plus or minus age 30

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Synonyms & Antonyms for plus or minus

Synonyms: Adverb

Antonyms: Adverb

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Examples of plus or minus in a Sentence

Adverb I have plus or minus five dollars in change.
Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Researchers surveyed 1,339 respondents for a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points. Naomi Lim, Washington Examiner, "Biden narrowly beating Trump in Georgia, poll shows," 19 May 2020 That poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points. William Cummings, USA TODAY, "New polls show Biden leading Trump in key states of Arizona, Florida and Virginia," 19 May 2020 Overall results in The Washington Post-Ipsos poll among the sample of 8,086 U.S. adults have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus one percentage point. Tim Craig, Anchorage Daily News, "Majority of Americans going to work fear exposing their household to coronavirus, poll indicates," 15 May 2020 The poll also found West ahead of Cornyn in Bexar County, 25% to 22% -- though that’s within the poll’s margin of error of plus or minus 2.85 percentage points. Robert T. Garrett, Dallas News, "Support among whites, independents, older Texans fuels MJ Hegar lead over Royce West in Texas Senate runoff," 7 May 2020 Overall results have an error margin of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points. Breanna Edwards, Essence, "As States Begin To Lift Restrictions, Few Americans Want Businesses Reopened: Poll," 5 May 2020 The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points. Andrew J. Tobias, cleveland, "Poll: Most Ohioans don’t want mail-only election in November," 27 Apr. 2020 The margin of error is plus or minus two percentage points. Jessie Balmert,, "Poll: 46% of black Ohioans said they experienced discrimination in past year," 4 Mar. 2020 The margin of error for the poll is plus or minus 3.9%. Paul Cobler, Dallas News, "Houston Astros should be stripped of 2017 World Series title, nationwide poll says," 11 Feb. 2020

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


1926, in the meaning defined above


1849, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for plus or minus

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The first known use of plus or minus was in 1849

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Cite this Entry

“Plus or minus.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

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