- the act of changing the order of elements arranged in a particular order, as abc into acb, bac, etc., or of arranging a number of elements in groups made up of equal numbers of the elements in different orders, as a and b in ab and ba; a one-to-one transformation of a set with a finite number of elements.
- any of the resulting arrangements or groups.Compare combination(def 8b).
Origin of permutation
SYNONYMS FOR permutation
Related formsper·mu·ta·tion·al, adjectiveper·mu·ta·tion·ist, noun
Examples from the Web for permutation
It is clear how very different the results would become by the permutation and combination of these diverse factors.Life Movements in Plants|Sir Jagadis Chunder Bose
This indicates the distinction between the permutation of letters and the transition of letters.The English Language|Robert Gordon Latham
We may thus select the four coins in one hundred ways, and the four removed may be arranged by permutation in twenty-four ways.Amusements in Mathematics|Henry Ernest Dudeney
This permutation is made very convenient by the sentences being printed in sections which may be moved about and combined at will.Montessori Elementary Materials|Maria Montessori
Let this be learned to perfection, backwards and forwards, or by permutation of words, and repeated the next day.The Mystic Will|Charles Godfrey Leland
British Dictionary definitions for permutation
- an ordered arrangement of the numbers, terms, etc, of a set into specified groupsthe permutations of a, b, and c, taken two at a time, are ab, ba, ac, ca, bc, cb
- a group formed in this way. The number of permutations of n objects taken r at a time is n !/(n – r)!Symbol: n P r Compare combination (def. 6)