# mantissa

[man-tis-uh]

- Mathematics. the decimal part of a common logarithm.Compare characteristic(def 3a).
- Obsolete. an addition of little or no importance, as to a literary work.

## Origin of mantissa^{}

1860–65; < Latin, variant of mantisa addition, makeweight, said to be from Etruscan; logarithmic mantissa so called because it is additional to the characteristic or integral part (term introduced by H. Briggs)

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

## Examples from the Web for mantissa

### Historical Examples

#### Linnæus, however, says that his plant came from India (Mantissa, p. 273).

Origin of Cultivated PlantsAlphonse De Candolle

#### The integral part of a logarithm is called the index or characteristic, and the fractional part the mantissa.

#### Mantissa Plantarum, generum editionis sextæ et specierum editionis secundæ.

Lives of Eminent Zoologists, from Aristotle to LinnusWilliam MacGillivray

#### Linnæus has described this plant minutely in his Mantissa Plant, so that no doubt remains of its being his maritimus.

The Botanical Magazine, Vol. VWilliam Curtis

#### Linnæus originally confounded it with a similar plant, the Draba alpina, a mistake since rectified in his Mantissa Plant.

The Botanical Magazine, Vol. VWilliam Curtis

# mantissa

- the fractional part of a common logarithm representing the digits of the associated number but not its magnitudethe mantissa of 2.4771 is .4771 Compare characteristic (def. 2a)

## Word Origin

C17: from Latin: something added, of Etruscan origin

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

## Word Origin and History for mantissa

### n.

decimal part of a logarithm, 1865, from Latin mantisa "a worthless addition, makeweight," perhaps a Gaulish word introduced into Latin via Etruscan (cf. Old Irish meit, Welsh maint "size").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

# mantissa

[măn-tĭs′ə]

- The part of a logarithm to the base ten that is to the right of the decimal point. For example, if 2.749 is a logarithm, .749 is the mantissa. Compare characteristic.

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