polynomial

1 of 2

noun

poly·​no·​mi·​al ˌpä-lə-ˈnō-mē-əl How to pronounce polynomial (audio)
: a mathematical expression of one or more algebraic terms each of which consists of a constant multiplied by one or more variables raised to a nonnegative integral power (such as a + bx + cx2)

polynomial

2 of 2

adjective

: relating to, composed of, or expressed as one or more polynomials
polynomial functions
polynomial equations

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Then, in 1830, the 18-year-old political firebrand Évariste Galois extended this work by giving exact criteria for when a polynomial of any degree is solvable. Quanta Magazine, 30 June 2022 For example, x²-6 is a polynomial with integer coefficients, since 1 and -6 are integers. Dave Linkletter, Popular Mechanics, 22 July 2022 For instance, the polynomial −x+1 has a root of approximately –1.67304, but the exact value is impossible to express with those tools. Quanta Magazine, 30 June 2022 The mathematical expression that gives the answer is called a chromatic polynomial. New York Times, 5 July 2022 In math, sometimes a polynomial, like x2 + y2, works the same way. Quanta Magazine, 9 Nov. 2021 In the graph of a cubic polynomial like x3 + 1, one end always goes off to negative infinity. Quanta Magazine, 1 Nov. 2021 And what could make a polynomial biased in the first place? Quanta Magazine, 9 Nov. 2021 This is just one example of what’s called a quadratic polynomial, in which the variable is raised to the second power. Quanta Magazine, 22 Feb. 2021
Adjective
To understand polynomials, mathematicians study their roots, the values of x that make the polynomial equal zero. Quanta Magazine, 21 Apr. 2022 If someone comes up with an algorithm that can unknot any knot in what’s called polynomial time, that will put the Unknotting Problem fully to rest. Dave Linkletter, Popular Mechanics, 22 July 2022 The polynomial x2 + 1 has degree 2, while x17 – 4 has degree 17. Quanta Magazine, 21 Apr. 2022 Picture the graph of a polynomial function as a curve floating above the horizontal axis. Quanta Magazine, 1 Nov. 2021 One approach to replicate human consciousness into an AGI model would be to treat the brain as a quantum computer to solve problems in polynomial time with brute computing power alone. Naveen Joshi, Forbes, 25 Mar. 2022 On the other hand, the polynomial xy + zw can’t be broken down this way. Quanta Magazine, 9 Nov. 2021 Instead of asking about integer solutions to polynomial equations, the André-Oort conjecture is about solutions involving far more complicated geometric objects called Shimura varieties. Quanta Magazine, 3 Feb. 2022 In particular, mathematicians often study the roots of these expressions, the values of x that make the polynomial equal zero. Quanta Magazine, 25 May 2021 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Noun

poly- + -nomial (as in binomial)

First Known Use

Noun

1674, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

circa 1704, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of polynomial was in 1674

Dictionary Entries Near polynomial

Cite this Entry

“Polynomial.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/polynomial. Accessed 29 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition

polynomial 1 of 2

noun

poly·​no·​mi·​al ˌpäl-i-ˈnō-mē-əl How to pronounce polynomial (audio)
: an algebraic expression having two or more terms
the polynomial a2 + 2ab − b2

polynomial

2 of 2

adjective

: relating to, composed of, or expressed as one or more polynomials
7023 written as 7(103) + 0(102) + 2(101) + 3(100) is in polynomial form

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