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percent Syllabification: per·cent
Pronunciation: /pərˈsent/
(also chiefly British per cent)

Definition of percent in English:


By a specified amount in or for every hundred: new car sales may be down nineteen percent staff rejected a 1.8 percent increase
More example sentences
  • If we are one hundred percent convinced of our case then a little dishonesty to iron out the odd inconsistency hardly seems wrong.
  • There are few if any behavioral characteristics in humans that are one hundred percent genetic.
  • However, my experience of camp food is one hundred percent favourable.


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1One part in every hundred: a reduction of half a percent or so in price
More example sentences
  • Well, you're one of the, probably, half of a percent of people who would actually do that.
  • According to the report, these prices fell by half a percent in October.
  • To put that in perspective, we humans have been around for half a percent of that.
1.1The rate, number, or amount in each hundred; percentage: the percent of drug users who are infected
More example sentences
  • They speak of the reciprocal of the payback period as a percent per year rate of return.
  • The second compatibility problem is a slow boot issue and we believe it is a small percent of users that have experienced this.
  • Some of the leases are based on a dollar amount per square foot and some on percent of income.


Both spellings, percent and per cent, are acceptable, but consistency should be maintained. Percent is more common in US usage; per cent is more common in British usage.


Mid 16th century: from per + cent, perhaps an abbreviation of pseudo-Latin per centum.

Words that rhyme with percent

absent, accent, anent, ascent, assent, augment, bent, cement, cent, circumvent, consent, content, dent, event, extent, ferment, foment, forewent, forwent, frequent, gent, Ghent, Gwent, lament, leant, lent, meant, misrepresent, misspent, outwent, pent, pigment, rent, scent, segment, sent, spent, stent, Stoke-on-Trent, Tashkent, tent, torment, Trent, underspent, underwent, vent, went
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