Definition of calculus in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈkalkjʊləs/


1 (plural calculuses) (also infinitesimal calculus) [mass noun] The branch of mathematics that deals with the finding and properties of derivatives and integrals of functions, by methods originally based on the summation of infinitesimal differences. The two main types are differential calculus and integral calculus.
Example sentences
  • By integrating the function using calculus we can compare the sum of the series with the integral of the function and draw conclusions from this.
  • There are shorter methods for summing an infinite number of terms in calculus and other branches of advanced mathematics.
  • Newton was one of the inventors of the branch of mathematics called calculus.
2 (plural calculuses) A particular method or system of calculation or reasoning.
Example sentences
  • I've sat in on these liver distribution meetings, and it's a grim calculus.
  • Some utilitarians think that everything can be reduced to a rational calculus of pleasures or pains; most of the rest of us do not.
  • Above all else, the mammoth South Asian fan base needs to start seeing cricket as a pursuit of shared enjoyment, not as a calculus of honour and shame.
3 (plural calculi /ˈkalkjʊlʌɪ/ /ˈkalkjʊliː/) Medicine A hard mass formed by minerals within the body, especially in the kidney or gall bladder: biliary calculi
More example sentences
  • Depending on where they are located, kidney stones are also known as renal calculi, urinary calculi, urinary tract stone disease, nephrolithiasis, urolithiasis, and ureterolithiasis.
  • Key words used included kidney stones, urinary calculi, urolithiasis, urinary tract stones, and nephrolithiasis.
  • If stones are present, they appear as radiolucent or radiopaque calculi within the gallbladder.
3.1 another term for tartar.
Example sentences
  • The calculus may be extracted through the fistula site and if needed, sialodochotomy could help in delivering the calculus to the oral cavity.
  • The calculus is rough and causes plaque to accumulate more rapidly increasing the problem.
  • The most likely cause of retrieval failure was that the calculus was fixed to the duct wall.


Mid 17th century: from Latin, literally 'small pebble (as used on an abacus)'.

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Line breaks: cal¦cu|lus

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