/frak"sheuhn/, n.1. Math.a. a number usually expressed in the form a/b.b. a ratio of algebraic quantities similarly expressed.2. Chem. (in a volatile mixture) a component whose range of boiling point temperatures allows it to be separated from other components by fractionation.3. a part as distinct from the whole of anything; portion or section: The meeting started with a fraction of us present.4. a very small part or segment of anything; minute portion: Only a fraction of the work was completed on time.5. a very small amount; a little bit: It was only a fraction away from completion.6. a piece broken off; fragment or bit.7. the act of breaking.8. Eccles. (in a Eucharistic service) the breaking of the Host.v.t., v.i.9. to divide or break into fractions, sections, factions, etc.: Dissension threatens to fraction the powerful union.[1350-1400; ME fraccioun < LL fraction- (s. of fractio) a breaking (in pieces), equiv. to L fract(us) (ptp. of frangere to BREAK) + -ion- -ION]
* * *In arithmetic, a number expressed as a quotient, in which a numerator is divided by a denominator.In a simple fraction, both are integers. A complex fraction has a fraction in the numerator or denominator. In a proper fraction, the numerator is less than the denominator. If the numerator is greater, it is called an improper fraction and can also be written as a mixed numbera whole-number quotient with a proper-fraction remainder. Any fraction can be written in decimal form by carrying out the division of the numerator by the denominator. The result may end at some point, or one or more digits may repeat without end.
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