theorem

noun
the·​o·​rem | \ ˈthē-ə-rəm , ˈthir-əm\

Definition of theorem

1 : a formula, proposition, or statement in mathematics or logic deduced or to be deduced from other formulas or propositions
2 : an idea accepted or proposed as a demonstrable truth often as a part of a general theory : proposition the theorem that the best defense is offense
3 : stencil
4 : a painting produced especially on velvet by the use of stencils for each color

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from theorem

theorematic \ ˌthē-​ə-​rə-​ˈma-​tik , ˌthir-​ə-​ \ adjective

Examples of theorem in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Adam Smith, ever the British empiricist, would not have approved of reliance on blackboard theorems. Deirdre Mccloskey, WSJ, "‘Adam Smith: Father of Economics’ Review: Obvious, Simple and Wise," 7 Sep. 2018 Interestingly enough, Kruskal's tree theorem required non-finite mathmatics to prove, using advanced techniques such as transfinite arithmetic and ordinal numbers. Jay Bennett, Popular Mechanics, "Wrap Your Head Around the Enormity of the Number TREE(3)," 20 Oct. 2017 Museum staffers counted the number of glow sticks on each side of the building to prove that the skyscraper conformed to the theorem. Joshua A. Krisch, Popular Mechanics, "A Pythagorean Party at the Flatiron Building," 6 Dec. 2013 The problem came to be called the ultraviolet catastrophe, because the best theorem of the day predicted that objects heated to very high temperatures should spew infinite amounts of short-wavelength energy. Tim Folger, Discover Magazine, "How Quantum Mechanics Lets Us See, Smell and Touch," 24 Oct. 2018 The prime number theorem and Riemann hypothesis get the attention and the money, but both followed up on earlier, less glamorous data analysis. ..... Martin H. Weissman, Smithsonian, "Why Prime Numbers Still Surprise and Mystify Mathematicians," 2 Apr. 2018 To understand their thinking, consider that classic political science concept: the median voter theorem. Andrew Prokop, Vox, "The top-two primary could lock out Democrats from key House races.," 5 June 2018 Stonehenge secret: Did builders use Pythagoras' theorem 2,000 years before the philosopher lived? Fox News, "FOX NEWS FIRST: Remembering Charles Krauthammer; Melania's fashion 'statement' sparks 'fake news' frenzy," 22 June 2018 His theorem, a part of Euclidean geometry taught in many high school math classes, states that the hypotenuse of a right triangle (the side opposite the right angle) equals the sum of the squares of the other two sides. Kevin Kelleher, Fortune, "Stonehenge Builders Used Pythagoras' Theorem Centuries Before His Birth, Say Experts," 21 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'theorem.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of theorem

1551, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for theorem

Late Latin theorema, from Greek theōrēma, from theōrein to look at, from theōros spectator, from thea act of seeing — more at theater entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about theorem

Statistics for theorem

Last Updated

16 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for theorem

The first known use of theorem was in 1551

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for theorem

theorem

noun

English Language Learners Definition of theorem

technical : a formula or statement that can be proved from other formulas or statements

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on theorem

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with theorem

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for theorem

Spanish Central: Translation of theorem

Nglish: Translation of theorem for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about theorem

Comments on theorem

What made you want to look up theorem? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

very full or close together

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What did you just call me?! A Quiz

  • rows-of-various-emoji
  • If a member of the audience describes your speech as bombastic, does that person mean it is:
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!