from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Mathematics An expression that indicates the quotient of two quantities, such as 1/3 .
  • noun A disconnected piece; a fragment.
  • noun A small part; a bit.
  • noun A chemical component separated by fractionation.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In mathematics: In geometry, any multiple of any submultiple of a magnitude.
  • noun In chem., one of the parts into which a substance is separated in the process of fractional distillation. See fractionation.
  • Same as fractionate.
  • noun The act of breaking, or the state of being broken, especially by violence; a breaking or fracture.
  • noun Specifically (ecclesiastical), the liturgical act of breaking or dividing the eucharistic bread, or host.
  • noun A fragment; a separated portion; a disconnected part.
  • noun In mathematics: In arithmetic, a part, or a number of aliquot parts, of unity.
  • noun In algebra, a ration of algebraic quantities analogous to the arithmetical vulgar fraction, and similarly expressed.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb (Chem.) To separate by means of, or to subject to, fractional distillation or crystallization; to fractionate; -- frequently used with out.
  • noun obsolete The act of breaking, or state of being broken, especially by violence.
  • noun A portion; a fragment.
  • noun (Arith. or Alg.) One or more aliquot parts of a unit or whole number; an expression for a definite portion of a unit or magnitude.
  • noun a fraction in which the number of equal parts into which the integer is supposed to be divided is indicated by figures or letters, called the denominator, written below a line, over which is the numerator, indicating the number of these parts included in the fraction; as 1/2, one half, 2/5, two fifths.
  • noun a fraction having a fraction or mixed number in the numerator or denominator, or in both.
  • noun a fraction of a fraction; two or more fractions connected by of.
  • noun See under Continued, Decimal, Partial, etc.
  • noun a fraction in which the numerator is greater than the denominator.
  • noun a fraction in which the numerator is less than the denominator.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A part of a whole, especially a comparatively small part.
  • noun A ratio of two numbers, the numerator and the denominator, usually written one above the other and separated by a horizontal bar.
  • noun chemistry A component of a mixture, separated by fractionation.
  • noun In a eucharistic service, the breaking of the host.
  • noun A small amount.
  • verb To divide or break into fractions.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a small part or item forming a piece of a whole
  • noun the quotient of two rational numbers
  • verb perform a division
  • noun a component of a mixture that has been separated by a fractional process


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English fraccioun, a breaking, from Anglo-Norman, from Late Latin frāctiō, frāctiōn-, from Latin frāctus, past participle of frangere, to break; see bhreg- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English fraccioun ("a breaking"), from Anglo-Norman, from Medieval Latin fractio ("a fragment, portion"), from earlier Latin fractio ("a breaking, a breaking into pieces"), from fractus (English fracture), past participle of frangere ("to break") (whence English frangible), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰrag- (English break).


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