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See more synonyms for topology on Thesaurus.com
noun, plural to·pol·o·gies for 3. Mathematics.
  1. the study of those properties of geometric forms that remain invariant under certain transformations, as bending or stretching.
  2. Also called point set topology. the study of limits in sets considered as collections of points.
  3. a collection of open sets making a given set a topological space.
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Origin of topology

First recorded in 1650–60; topo- + -logy
Related formstop·o·log·ic [top-uh-loj-ik] /ˌtɒp əˈlɒdʒ ɪk/, top·o·log·i·cal, adjectivetop·o·log·i·cal·ly, adverbto·pol·o·gist, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for topology

Historical Examples

  • “Fade is a function of geography and topology,” the graybeard said quietly.

    Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town

    Cory Doctorow

British Dictionary definitions for topology


  1. the branch of mathematics concerned with generalization of the concepts of continuity, limit, etc
  2. a branch of geometry describing the properties of a figure that are unaffected by continuous distortion, such as stretching or knottingFormer name: analysis situs
  3. maths a family of subsets of a given set S, such that S is a topological space
  4. the arrangement and interlinking of computers in a computer network
  5. the study of the topography of a given place, esp as far as it reflects its history
  6. the anatomy of any specific bodily area, structure, or part
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Derived Formstopologic (ˌtɒpəˈlɒdʒɪk) or topological, adjectivetopologically, adverbtopologist, noun
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 topology


1610s (implied in topological), from topo-, comb. form of Greek topos "place" (see topos) + -logy.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

topology in Science


  1. The mathematical study of the geometric properties that are not normally affected by changes in the size or shape of geometric figures. In topology, a donut and a coffee cup with a handle are equivalent shapes, because each has a single hole.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.