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

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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

In 2002 cannabis was downgraded to a Class C drug, equivalent to steroids, removing the threat of arrest from those in possession of small quantities. Stephen Castle, New York Times, "Stung by a Boy’s Suffering, U.K. Reviews Medical Marijuana Rules," 19 June 2018 Now, Vitra is bringing that same radio design back to life and selling it in a limited quantity of 999. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Eames’ lost 1946 radio design, once a flop, is making a comeback," 5 Oct. 2018 But the stars of the weekend were the members of the JACK Quartet, known quantities for their casual mastery of difficult scores. Zachary Woolfe, New York Times, "A Quirky Violinist and a Festival to Match," 11 June 2018 Employers already have vast quantities of data about their workers. The Economist, "Smile, you’re on cameraThere will be little privacy in the workplace of the future," 28 Mar. 2018 And the luckiest Houstonians have vast quantities of water sitting in their backyards, concrete oases just waiting for overheated people to get in. Dana Burke, Houston Chronicle, "Heavenly private pools for sale around the Houston area," 16 Mar. 2018 The brand-new outfit consists of four folks who are already known quantities on Chicago's underground scene: Jill Flanagan of Forced Into Femininity, Joe Seger of Big Zit, Matt Revers of Negative Scanner, and Anna Kinderman of Red Delicious. Leor Galil, Chicago Reader, "Reality TV star and tattoo artist Phor showcases his rap skills at 1st Ward," 16 Jan. 2018 Putting all of this into context, having a diminished ovarian reserve can mean that at age 30, the quality and quantity of your eggs is more typical of someone who’s 45, for instance. Korin Miller, SELF, "What Does It Mean to Have a Diminished Ovarian Reserve?," 17 Nov. 2018 Since then, constitutionalists have cheered the quality and sheer quantity of his appointments to all levels of the judiciary. Bobby Jindal, WSJ, "Why Republicans Stick With Trump," 30 Aug. 2018

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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Statistics for quantity

Last Updated

15 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for quantity

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

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More Definitions for quantity



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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