whole number


Definition of whole number

: any of the set of nonnegative integers also : integer

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Synonyms for whole number


digit, figure, integer, number, numeral, numeric

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Examples of whole number in a Sentence

since percentages have been rounded off to whole numbers, the total will not be exactly equal to 100%

Recent Examples on the Web

Over the past century, however, some arcane theorems from 18th-century number theory (that is, the study of whole numbers) were used to dream up one of the most powerful modern encryption systems. Eugenia Cheng, WSJ, "Secret Codes Built on Very Large Numbers," 3 Oct. 2018 An irrational number is one that cannot be expressed by a fraction of integers, or whole numbers. Jay Bennett, Popular Mechanics, "The Mysteries of the Golden Ratio Explained by Math and Sunflowers," 11 May 2018 This added precision means that many Achievement percentages can only be factored into specific whole numbers. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Valve leaks Steam game player counts; we have the numbers," 6 July 2018 Having a whole number of presidents not gotten congressional approval from -- TURNER: Yes. KURTZ: -- whole range of military actions. Fox News, "Mixed media verdict on Syria bombing," 16 Apr. 2018 To study primes, mathematicians strain whole numbers through one virtual mesh after another until only primes remain. Martin H. Weissman, Smithsonian, "Why Prime Numbers Still Surprise and Mystify Mathematicians," 2 Apr. 2018 And since the 19th Century, pi has been known to be transcendental, meaning that no combination of its powers can add up to a whole number. Dan Rockmore /, NBC News, "Pi Day spotlights one of math's most seductive numbers," 14 Mar. 2018 This month, their Work Places involved fluently adding and subtracting multidigit whole numbers. Alec Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Greenland Elementary School implementing 'Bridges in Mathematics' curriculum," 23 Jan. 2018 As Wired reports, there are a whole number of different ways to do so, with varying degrees of intensity. Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "The Key to an Infinite Holodeck Could Just Be Walking Around in Circles," 21 Aug. 2015

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for whole number

The first known use of whole number was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for whole number

whole number


English Language Learners Definition of whole number

mathematics : a number (such as 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, etc.) that is not a negative and is not a fraction

whole number


Kids Definition of whole number

: a number that is zero or any of the natural numbers

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More from Merriam-Webster on whole number

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for whole number

Spanish Central: Translation of whole number

Nglish: Translation of whole number for Spanish Speakers

Comments on whole number

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


incapable of being surmounted or overcome

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