# subtract

### verb (used with object)

### verb (used without object)

## QUIZZES

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## Meet Grammar Coach

Improve Your Writing## Origin of subtract

## synonym study for subtract

## OTHER WORDS FROM subtract

sub·tract·er, nounun·sub·tract·ed, adjective## Words nearby subtract

## VOCAB BUILDER

## What does *subtract* mean?

*Subtract* means to take something away, usually as in taking a piece out of a whole.

In math, *subtract* means to perform subtraction, the operation in which you find difference between two numbers or quantities.

You can *subtract* one thing from another, as in *We need to subtract the cost of labor from our total profits*.

You can also *subtract* something without mentioning what you’re subtracting it from, as in *If you subtract the busy traffic, my day wasn’t that bad*. In other words, when you consider everything in my day, except for the traffic it wasn’t a bad day.

For the most part, *subtract* usually refers to taking a small piece away from a bigger whole. However, *subtracting* can potentially result in negative amounts or debts when you’re *subtracting* numbers.

When you first learned subtraction, your teacher might have said that when we *subtract*, we are “taking away” one number from another. For example, if you *subtract* 3 from 5, you take away 3 from 5, which leaves you with 2.

Example:* I need to remember to subtract my electric bill from my monthly budget. *

## Where does *subtract * come from?

The first records of *subtract* come from around 1530. It comes from the Latin verb *subtrahere*, meaning “to draw away from underneath.”

*Subtracting* numbers is one of the first operations we learn in math. Even very large numbers can be *subtracted* quickly by separating out numbers into columns of smaller units.

## Did you know ... ?

**What are some other forms related to subtract?**

- subtraction (noun)
- subtractive (adjective)
- subtracter (noun)

**What are some synonyms for subtract?**

**What are some words that share a root or word element with subtract? **

**What are some words that often get used in discussing subtract?**

## How is *subtract* used in real life?

*Subtract* is a common word that means to take something away or to perform subtraction.

If I ask for cash in a briefcase, will they subtract the cost of the briefcase?

— Zack Kahn (@zackkahn) July 4, 2010

Surround yourself with people who subtract from your stress, not add to it.

— Marcus Stroman (@STR0) June 21, 2015

Pick number between 1 & 5. Multiply by 9. Add the two digits of the new number together. Now subtract 5. Is your final number 4? #BrainGames

— National Geographic TV (@NatGeoTV) April 17, 2013

## Try using *subtract*!

**True or False?**

To *subtract* something, you add it to something else.