re·​duc·​tion | \ ri-ˈdək-shən How to pronounce reduction (audio) \

Definition of reduction

1 : the act or process of reducing : the state of being reduced
2a : something made by reducing
b : the amount by which something is reduced
3 [Spanish reducción, from Latin reduction-, reductio] : a South American Indian settlement directed by Jesuit missionaries
4 : meiosis sense 2 specifically : production of the gametic chromosome number in the first meiotic division

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Other Words from reduction

reductional \ ri-​ˈdək-​shnəl How to pronounce reductional (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for reduction



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Examples of reduction in a Sentence

a drastic reduction in size Many voters want to see some reduction of the deficit. There is a 20 percent reduction on selected items during this sale.
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Recent Examples on the Web Cities have seen a wide range of noise reductions, ranging from 20 percent to 90 percent, said Lecocq. Anna Kuchment, Dallas News, "‘Bored’ seismologists find a new hobby: Tracking silence," 21 May 2020 Anagnostou said state funding reductions for the next fiscal year, starting in July 1, are unknown. Bob Sandrick, cleveland, "Strongsville, Brecksville-Broadview Heights, North Royalton schools each hit with state funding cuts exceeding $1 million," 18 May 2020 Seth Myers, an official at the city’s Economic Development Corp., said Friday that the reductions—some temporary, others permanent—would lower annual operating costs by $10 million to $44 million. Paul Berger, WSJ, "New York City Reduces Ferry Service Amid Coronavirus Outbreak," 15 May 2020 The feel-good, choreographed events around the coronavirus increasingly appear to be a cover for poor planning, apathy and an opportunistic exacerbation of islamophobia and reduction of civil liberties. Samar Halarnkar, Quartz India, "India’s suffering because it chose theatrics over governance in dealing with coronavirus," 10 May 2020 The reductions particularly affected men between the ages 18 and 38, according to the survey. Khristopher J. Brooks, CBS News, "Nearly 50 million Americans just had their credit card limits cut," 4 May 2020 Medications such as antidepressants and nightmare-reduction drugs can help, but psychotherapy is crucial. Marisa Cohen, Good Housekeeping, "How to Help Someone With Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder," 23 Apr. 2020 The low numbers are due to changes to prepare for any future COVID-19 surges, a reduction in elective and outpatient surgeries, and a general drop in hospital visits as people try to stay away, association president and CEO Jared Kosin said. Zaz Hollander, Anchorage Daily News, "Alaska’s hospitals are front-line for COVID-19 but they’re feeling the financial pinch, too," 8 May 2020 More than half of the 21 economists in a Bloomberg survey predict a 50 basis-point reduction. Prinesha Naidoo,, "South Africa Inflation Rises to a 15-Month High," 7 May 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for reduction

Middle English reduccion restoration, from Middle French reducion, from Late Latin & Latin; Late Latin reduction-, reductio reduction (in a syllogism), from Latin, restoration, from reducere

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Time Traveler for reduction

Time Traveler

The first known use of reduction was in the 15th century

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Statistics for reduction

Last Updated

24 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Reduction.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for reduction


How to pronounce reduction (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of reduction

: the act of making something smaller in size, amount, number, etc. : the act of reducing something
: an amount by which something is reduced


re·​duc·​tion | \ ri-ˈdək-shən How to pronounce reduction (audio) \

Kids Definition of reduction

1 : the act of making something smaller or less : the state of being made smaller or less a reduction in noise
2 : the amount by which something is made smaller or less


re·​duc·​tion | \ ri-ˈdək-shən How to pronounce reduction (audio) \

Medical Definition of reduction

1 : the replacement or realignment of a body part in normal position or restoration of a bodily condition to normal
2 : the process of reducing by chemical or electrochemical means
3 : the psychological diminishment of emotion or needs through activity or adjustment
4 : meiosis specifically : production of the gametic chromosome number in the first meiotic division

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