sub·​tract | \ səb-ˈtrakt How to pronounce subtract (audio) \
subtracted; subtracting; subtracts

Definition of subtract

transitive verb

: to take away by or as if by deducting subtract 5 from 9 subtract funds from the project

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Other Words from subtract

subtracter noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for subtract



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Examples of subtract in a Sentence

if you subtract 10 from 23, you get 13 you can subtract the time you spent daydreaming from your total homework time
Recent Examples on the Web Tabor’s detailed system, which adds or subtracts points for just about everything imaginable — tackles, key blocks, knockdowns, penalties drawn, penalties committed — hadn’t been finalized when players left in January. Brad Biggs,, "The Bears have made a major improvement in at least 1 area: Chris Tabor’s special teams units are among the NFL’s best," 9 Nov. 2019 That figure represents overall hiring, while the data from last Friday’s jobs report is a net figure, which subtracts layoffs, quits and retirements from total hiring. Washington Post, "US job openings decline in September though remain healthy," 5 Nov. 2019 In addition, the owners base those calculations on industry revenue of $9.4 billion, which subtracts central league expenses from total revenue. Bill Shaikin, Los Angeles Times, "MLB’s next collective bargaining agreement could reward younger players sooner," 19 Oct. 2019 Since scoring TDs on their first two possessions at Los Angeles, the Broncos have reached the end zone just once in their last 22 drives, subtracting kneel-downs. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Fangio has found the right mix on Denver’s defense," 14 Oct. 2019 Granted the 19-year-old is less of a sure thing than Kessel, but Hayton still might end up providing more value since the Coyotes A.) won't be paying him much, and B.) didn't subtract a valuable skater in order to play him. Richard Morin, azcentral, "Barrett Hayton — not Phil Kessel — may end up being the Coyotes' biggest roster addition," 9 Sep. 2019 Bobby Nightengale, Cincinnati Enquirer As far as the baseball part, subtracting Jared Hughes and adding Joel Kuhnel to the roster makes perfect sense for the Reds. John Fay,, "Jared Hughes latest veteran to depart from the Cincinnati Reds," 15 Aug. 2019 To see how much each school will cost your family, subtract the gift aid your student was awarded from the estimated cost of attendance. Anchorage Daily News, "Family finances: How to decipher a financial aid letter," 24 July 2019 Thankfully, subtracting all the possible fillers that could have been included, we’re left with five absolutely solid games that have fought to earn their spot among the best of the best. Brittany Vincent, The Hollywood Reporter, "The Best Games of 2019 (So Far)," 15 July 2019

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

1557, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for subtract

Latin subtractus, past participle of subtrahere to draw from beneath, withdraw, from sub- + trahere to draw

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Statistics for subtract

Last Updated

18 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for subtract

The first known use of subtract was in 1557

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More Definitions for subtract


How to pronounce subtract (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of subtract

: to take (a number or amount) from another number or amount


sub·​tract | \ səb-ˈtrakt How to pronounce subtract (audio) \
subtracted; subtracting

Kids Definition of subtract

: to take away (as one part or number from another) : deduct

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