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Webster 1913 Edition


Tangent

Tan′gent

,
Noun.
[L.
tangens
,
-entis
, p. pr. of
tangere
to touch; akin to Gr. [GREEK] having seized: cf. F.
tangente
. Cf.
Attain
,
Contaminate
,
Contingent
,
Entire
,
Tact
,
Taste
,
Tax
,
Verb.
T.
]
(Geom.)
A tangent line curve, or surface; specifically, that portion of the straight line tangent to a curve that is between the point of tangency and a given line, the given line being, for example, the axis of abscissas, or a radius of a circle produced. See
Trigonometrical function
, under
Function
.
Artificial tangent
, or
Logarithmic tangent
,
the logarithm of the natural tangent of an arc.
Natural tangent
,
a decimal expressing the length of the tangent of an arc, the radius being reckoned unity.
Tangent galvanometer
(Elec.)
,
a form of galvanometer having a circular coil and a short needle, in which the tangent of the angle of deflection of the needle is proportional to the strength of the current.
Tangent of an angle
,
the natural tangent of the arc subtending or measuring the angle.
Tangent of an arc
,
a right line, as ta, touching the arc of a circle at one extremity a, and terminated by a line ct, passing from the center through the other extremity o.

Tan′gent

,
Adj.
[L.
tangens
,
-entis
, p. pr.]
Touching; touching at a single point
; specifically
(Geom.)
meeting a curve or surface at a point and having at that point the same direction as the curve or surface; – said of a straight line, curve, or surface;
as, a line
tangent
to a curve; a curve
tangent
to a surface;
tangent
surfaces.
Tangent plane
(Geom.)
,
a plane which touches a surface in a point or line.
Tangent scale
(Gun.)
,
a kind of breech sight for a cannon.
Tangent screw
(Mach.)
,
an endless screw; a worm.

Webster 1828 Edition


Tangent

TAN'GENT

,
Noun.
[L. tangens, touching. See Touch.]
In geometry, a right line which touches a curve, but which when produced, does not cut it. In trigonometry, the tangent of an arc, is a right line touching the arc at one extremity, and terminated by a second passing through the other extremity.

Definition 2022


tangent

tangent

English

A straight line tangent to a curve
Tangent function of unit circle

Noun

tangent (plural tangents)

  1. (geometry) A straight line touching a curve at a single point without crossing it there.
  2. (trigonometry) In a right triangle, the ratio of the length of the side opposite the angle to the length of the side adjacent to the angle. Symbols: tan, tg
  3. A topic nearly unrelated to the main topic, but having a point in common with it.
    I believe we went off onto a tangent when we started talking about monkeys on unicycles at his retirement party.
    • 1928, Lawrence R. Bourne, chapter 1, in Well Tackled!:
      “Uncle Barnaby was always father and mother to me,” Benson broke in; then after a pause his mind flew off at a tangent. “Is old Hannah all right—in the will, I mean?”
    • 2009: Stuart Heritage, Hecklerspray, Friday the 22nd of May in 2009 at 1 o’clock p.m., “Jon & Kate Latest: People You Don’t Know Do Crap You Don’t Care About
      Jon & Kate Plus 8 is a show based on two facts: (1) Jon and Kate Gosselin have eight children, and (2) the word ‘Kate’ rhymes with the word ‘eight’. One suspects that if Kate were ever to have another child, a shady network executive would urge her to put it in a binbag with a brick and drop it down a well. But this is just a horrifying tangent.
  4. A small metal blade by which a clavichord produces sound.

Synonyms

  • (straight line): tangent line

Derived terms

Related terms

Translations

Adjective

tangent (not comparable)

  1. (geometry) Touching a curve at a single point but not crossing it at that point.
  2. Of a topic, only loosely related to a main topic.

See also


Danish

Noun

tangent c (singular definite tangenten, plural indefinite tangenter)

  1. (geometry) tangent
    Differentialregning kan fortolkes som forsøget på at bestemme en tangents hældning.
    Differential calculus may be interpreted as the attempt to determine the slope of a tangent.
  2. A piano key

Declension

See also

References


French

Adjective

tangent m (feminine singular tangente, masculine plural tangents, feminine plural tangentes)

  1. (mathematics) tangential
  2. borderline

Latin

Verb

tangent

  1. third-person plural future active indicative of tangō

Norwegian Bokmål

Etymology

From German Tangente, Tangens

Noun

tangent m (definite singular tangenten, indefinite plural tangenter, definite plural tangentene)

  1. (geometry) a tangent
  2. (music) a key (e.g. on a piano)

References


Norwegian Nynorsk

Etymology

From German Tangente, Tangens

Noun

tangent m (definite singular tangenten, indefinite plural tangentar, definite plural tangentane)

  1. (geometry) a tangent
  2. (music) a key (e.g. on a piano)

References


Swedish

Noun

tangent c

  1. a key (button on a typewriter, computer keyboard or piano)
  2. (mathematics) a tangent

Declension

Inflection of tangent 
Singular Plural
Indefinite Definite Indefinite Definite
Nominative tangent tangenten tangenter tangenterna
Genitive tangents tangentens tangenters tangenternas

Related terms