# triangulation

[trahy-ang-gyuh-ley-shuh n]

- a technique for establishing the distance between any two points, or the relative position of two or more points, by using such points as vertices of a triangle or series of triangles, such that each triangle has a side of known or measurable length (base or base line) that permits the size of the angles of the triangle and the length of its other two sides to be established by observations taken either upon or from the two ends of the base line.
- the triangles thus formed and measured.

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## Origin of triangulation^{}

1810–20; < Medieval Latin triangulātiōn- (stem of triangulātiō) the making of triangles. See triangulate, -ion

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

## Examples from the Web for triangulation

### Contemporary Examples

#### This is triangulation, except that in this case most of the public is against Obama.

#### But there is no talk of triangulation; instead just a fact-defying rush to reinforce old narratives.

#### Even while ratcheting up his rhetoric against the GOP, Obama also engaged in a bit of Clintonian triangulation.

#### He is the only chance the Democrats have for holding the White House, so he can afford to engage in triangulation.

#### McCain trotted out his own version of triangulation, pivoting from the president to the Senate Democratic leader.

### Historical Examples

#### If I had a transit, I could determine that by a vertical angle,––triangulation.

Out of the DepthsRobert Ames Bennet

#### He learns much of triangulation and of aneroid computations.

Oswald LangdonCarson Jay Lee

#### The distances from each cannon muzzle had been obtained by triangulation.

Charles Carleton CoffinWilliam Elliot Griffis, D. D.

#### In surveying, the base on which the triangulation is founded.

The Sailor's Word-BookWilliam Henry Smyth

#### We'll have to find this hidden wireless by triangulation, just as we caught the dynamiters.

The Secret WirelessLewis E. Theiss

# triangulation

- a method of surveying in which an area is divided into triangles, one side (the base line) and all angles of which are measured and the lengths of the other lines calculated trigonometrically
- the network of triangles so formed
- the fixing of an unknown point, as in navigation, by making it one vertex of a triangle, the other two being known
- chess a key manoeuvre in the endgame in which the king moves thrice in a triangular path to leave the opposing king with the move and at a disadvantage

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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 triangulation

### n.

1818, from Medieval Latin triangulationem (mid-12c., nominative triangulatio), noun of action from Latin *triangulare, from triangulum (see triangle).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

# triangulation

[trī-ăng′gyə-lā′shən]

- A method of determining the relative positions of points in space by measuring the distances, and sometimes angles, between those points and other reference points whose positions are known. Triangulation often involves the use of trigonometry. It is commonly used in the navigation of aircraft and boats, and is the method used in the Global Positioning System , in which the reference points are satellites.

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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.