quan·​ti·​ty | \ ˈkwän-tə-tē How to pronounce quantity (audio) \
plural quantities

Definition of quantity

1a : an indefinite amount or number
b : a determinate or estimated amount
c : total amount or number
d : a considerable amount or number often used in plural generous quantities of luck— H. E. Putsch
2a : the aspect in which a thing is measurable in terms of greater, less, or equal or of increasing or decreasing magnitude
b : the subject of a mathematical operation
c : an individual considered with respect to a given situation an unknown quantity … as attorney general— Tom Wicker
3a : duration and intensity of speech sounds as distinct from their individual quality or phonemic character specifically : the relative length or brevity of a prosodic syllable in some languages (such as Greek and Latin)
b : the relative duration or time length of a speech sound or sound sequence
4 : the character of a logical proposition as being universal, particular, or singular

Examples of quantity in a Sentence

The wine is made in small quantities. The boss is worried about quantity as well as quality. The family buys food in quantity.
Recent Examples on the Web As the drug war ramped up during the 1970s and 1980s, drug quantity and weight were conceived as an objective indicator of a person’s involvement in the drug trade. Zachary Siegel, The New Republic, 20 Sep. 2022 Did this industrious earth sign spend three years perfecting the exact bubble size and quantity for the perfect lightweight explosive pop? Antonia Debianchi, Peoplemag, 19 Sep. 2022 Alternatively, applying the best paste in its right quantity helps your system avoid overheating and overclocking. Toby Grey, BGR, 15 Sep. 2022 Regulators should be agnostic about the permit price in a trading system, since the point is to set a target level of emissions and then let the market price that quantity. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 11 Sep. 2022 The utility’s ES Energies Strasbourg unit made quantity errors on transactions on Tuesday and Wednesday amounting to 2.03 gigawatts and 5.75 gigawatts of electricity, the company said in a statement. Gaspard Sebag, Fortune, 11 Sep. 2022 The 2021 class represented what can happen when quality meets quantity. Stephen Means, cleveland, 8 Sep. 2022 Daniel Gould, a Green Beret who won a Silver Star for valor in Afghanistan, only to be convicted in 2019 of conspiring to import a large quantity of cocaine into the U.S. from Colombia. Seth Harp, Rolling Stone, 4 Sep. 2022 However, cognitively demanding tasks, work that requires a high level and quantity of brain power, did not show significant performance improvement with microbreaks, according to the analysis. Megan Marples, CNN, 31 Aug. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of quantity

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for quantity

Middle English quantite, from Anglo-French quantité, from Latin quantitat-, quantitas, from quantus how much, how large; akin to Latin quam how, as, quando when, qui who — more at who

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The first known use of quantity was in the 14th century

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quantity of light

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Last Updated

23 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Quantity.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quantity. Accessed 30 Sep. 2022.

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More Definitions for quantity


quan·​ti·​ty | \ ˈkwän-tə-tē How to pronounce quantity (audio) \
plural quantities

Kids Definition of quantity

1 : amount entry 2, number There's a small quantity of fuel left.
2 : a large number or amount quantities of money We buy food in quantity.

More from Merriam-Webster on quantity

Nglish: Translation of quantity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of quantity for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about quantity


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