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 pluralgenerous 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

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web Molybdenum, or moly, is used in relatively small quantities. Matt Foster, Field & Stream, "How High-Quality Knife Steel is Made," 8 Jan. 2020 Keep the holiday magic alive:Hide Christmas gifts from porch pirates and snooping family Aldi notes on the website that quantities are limited and prices may vary by location. Kelly Tyko, USA TODAY, "Aldi's new New Year countdown calendar goes on sale Wednesday and is expected to sell out," 2 Dec. 2019 View this post on Instagram A post shared by Honest Beauty (@honest_beauty) on Jul 15, 2019 at 5:59pm PDT Her line of vegan liquid lipsticks are a reflection of valuing quality over quantity. Maya Allen, Marie Claire, "Jessica Alba, Clean Beauty Advocate, Wants More Transparency in the Industry," 1 Nov. 2019 Quality over quantity, getting healed up and making sure a lot of the guys that need more reps that have to take that next step as a championship player take that step for us. James Crepea | The Oregonian/oregonlive, oregonlive, "What Mario Cristobal said about Oregon’s first bye week," 25 Sep. 2019 Rhodes’s focus has always been on craft and quality over quantity. Vogue, "Golden Lady: Zandra Rhodes Celebrates 50 Years in Fashion With an Exhibition in London," 25 Sep. 2019 Warm up with a light jog or a few minutes of jumping rope, plus some dynamic stretches, and focus on proper form over quantity of reps. Hayden Carpenter, Outside Online, "The Ultimate Cross-Training Workout for Runners," 23 Sep. 2019 Rowe emphasizes quality over quantity, taking fewer reps to hone his focus and decrease physical strain. Julia Poe, Pro Soccer USA, "For Orlando City goalkeeper Brian Rowe, long wait to become a starter has been worth it," 19 Sep. 2019 Even so, the Army is focused on quality over quantity, Muth insisted, pointing to a fewer number of waivers issued to enlistees compared with the prior year. Aimee Picchi, CBS News, "One casualty of the tight job market: U.S. Army recruitment," 18 Sep. 2019

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.

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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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Time Traveler for quantity

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for quantity

Last Updated

15 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Quantity.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quantity. Accessed 18 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for quantity


How to pronounce quantity (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of quantity

: an amount or number of something
: a large amount or number of something


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.

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Comments on quantity

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