sum·​ma·​tion | \ (ˌ)sə-ˈmā-shən How to pronounce summation (audio) \

Definition of summation

1 : the act or process of forming a sum : addition
2 : sum, total
3 : cumulative action or effect especially : the process by which a sequence of stimuli that are individually inadequate to produce a response are cumulatively able to induce a nerve impulse
4 : a final part of an argument reviewing points made and expressing conclusions

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Other Words from summation

summational \ (ˌ)sə-​ˈmā-​shnəl How to pronounce summational (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective

Examples of summation in a Sentence

A summation can be found at the end of the report. We gave a summation of our discovery. The defense attorneys and prosecutors are set to make their final summations today.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In confronting the looming horror of the Civil War, many Americans found a fuller summation of their hopes and fears in Spiritualism than in something more sober. Ed Simon, The New Republic, "Marianne Williamson’s Spiritualism Has Deep, Liberal Roots," 7 Aug. 2019 Life is the summation of experience, both good and bad, and in A Dream About Lightning Bugs, Folds doesn’t hold back about the wrong turns, stumbles and falls that brought him here. Jordan Runtagh,, "A Musical Memoir: Ben Folds Shares 10 Songs That Shaped His Life," 6 Aug. 2019 To say this was a reductive summation of both of their work is an understatement. Soraya Roberts, Longreads, "This (Wo)Man’s Work," 19 July 2019 In summation, the book falsely asserts the massacre was orchestrated by the government as a way to promote gun violence prevention measures. Chris Harris,, "Dad of Boy Killed in Sandy Hook Shooting Wins Defamation Suit Against Hoaxers," 19 June 2019 That might chase away conservative viewers, who could react poorly to that summation of what’s going on, no matter how accurate. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "Domestic terrorism is on the rise. Why won’t cable news networks say so?," 29 Oct. 2018 His attorneys, in their own summations, told the jury that the government had failed to present enough evidence to prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt. Aruna Viswanatha, WSJ, "Manafort Jury Ends First Day of Deliberations," 16 Aug. 2018 Dean is a master of the art of summation, briskly anchoring readers who may be unfamiliar with these writers before moving on to make connections between them. Meg Waite Clayton, San Francisco Chronicle, "‘Sharp: The Women Who Made an Art of Having an Opinion,’ by Michelle Dean," 23 May 2018 The game was a summation of Mathias’ four years at Purdue. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: Purdue's seniors changed everything and still didn't get a nickname," 25 Feb. 2018

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

1760, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for summation

Last Updated

15 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for summation

The first known use of summation was in 1760

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English Language Learners Definition of summation

formal : a brief description of the most important information about something
US, law : a final speech made by a lawyer in a court of law to give a summary of the main arguments in a case


sum·​ma·​tion | \ (ˌ)sə-ˈmā-shən How to pronounce summation (audio) \

Medical Definition of summation

: cumulative action or effect especially : the process by which a sequence of stimuli that are individually inadequate to produce a response are cumulatively able to induce a nerve impulse — see spatial summation, temporal summation


sum·​ma·​tion | \ sə-ˈmā-shən How to pronounce summation (audio) \

Legal Definition of summation

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More from Merriam-Webster on summation

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with summation

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for summation

Spanish Central: Translation of summation Encyclopedia article about summation

Comments on summation

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to shake or wave menacingly

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