[ in-di-tur-muh-nit ]
/ ˌɪn dɪˈtɜr mə nɪt /



Mathematics. something whose value is not specified: used especially in abstract algebra; a variable.

Nearby words

  1. indestructibility,
  2. indestructible,
  3. indeterminable,
  4. indeterminacy,
  5. indeterminacy principle,
  6. indeterminate equation,
  7. indeterminate sentence,
  8. indeterminate vowel,
  9. indetermination,
  10. indeterminism

Origin of indeterminate

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English word from Late Latin word indēterminātus. See in-3, determinate

Related formsin·de·ter·mi·nate·ly, adverbin·de·ter·mi·nate·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for indeterminate

British Dictionary definitions for indeterminate


/ (ˌɪndɪˈtɜːmɪnɪt) /


Derived Formsindeterminacy, indetermination or indeterminateness, nounindeterminately, adverb

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 indeterminate



late 14c., from Late Latin indeterminatus "undefined," from in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + determinatus, past participle of determinare (see determine). Related: Indeterminately.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Science definitions for indeterminate


[ ĭn′dĭ-tûrmə-nĭt ]

Continuing to grow at the apical meristem or the terminal bud indefinitely, allowing for the development of an ever-increasing number of plant organs such as leaves, stems, or flowers to the side.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.