math·​e·​mat·​i·​cal ˌmath-ˈma-ti-kəl How to pronounce mathematical (audio)
variants or less commonly mathematic
ˌmath-ˈma-tik How to pronounce mathematical (audio)
: of, relating to, or according with mathematics
: rigorously exact : precise
: possible but highly improbable
only a mathematical chance
mathematically adverb

Example Sentences

They recorded the changes with mathematical precision. The team has only a mathematical chance of making the play-offs.
Recent Examples on the Web Magical as that may be, the mathematical equations needed to generate enough lift for that much weight limit what is possible. Bycarmelo Lo Faro, Fortune, 21 Nov. 2022 Drawing diagrams or composing complex mathematical equations is nearly impossible. Nate Hopper, The New Yorker, 30 Sep. 2022 Several crypto mining firms, which use computers to solve complex mathematical equations in order to generate new bitcoins, have moved sharply higher in recent days. Paul R. La Monica, CNN, 19 July 2022 However, studies have demonstrated the mathematical and algorithmic models of how to leverage quantum computers to accomplish brute force attacks in short periods. Konstantin Vilk, Forbes, 24 Sep. 2021 Because of that, officials in the state must keep their fingers on the pulse of mathematical models and population surveys that show the overall health of populations like red king crabs. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, 8 Nov. 2022 Nearly all mathematical models that describe fire behavior have been tested on flat terrain. Jack Lee, San Francisco Chronicle, 26 Oct. 2022 Many macroeconomists, meanwhile, had become besotted with mathematical models of the economy that didn’t even include a proper financial sector. John Cassidy, The New Yorker, 11 Oct. 2022 But mathematical models of lonsdaleite’s structure indicate that the substance could be up to 58 percent harder than cubic diamond. Daniel Leonard, Scientific American, 28 Sep. 2022 See More

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

Word History


Middle English mathematicalle, from Latin mathematicus, from Greek mathēmatikos, from mathēmat-, mathēma learning, mathematics, from manthanein to learn; probably akin to Goth mundon to pay attention

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of mathematical was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near mathematical

Cite this Entry

“Mathematical.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Nov. 2022.

Kids Definition



math·​e·​mat·​i·​cal ˌmath-ə-ˈmat-i-kəl How to pronounce mathematical (audio)
: of, relating to, or according with mathematics
: very exact
mathematical precision
mathematically adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on mathematical

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