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What is a minuend?

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Quick Answer

A minuend is the first number in a mathematical subtraction equation. For example, in the equation 15 - 8 = 7, the minuend is 15. The term also applies to quantities other than numbers, such as in the equation x - y = z, where x is the minuend.

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Full Answer

The name for the number subtracted from the minuend is a "subtrahend," while the answer is called the "difference." Thus, in the equation 15 - 8 = 7, the subtrahend is 8 and the difference is 7.

Minuend descends from the Latin word "minuendum," which means "to reduce" or "make small." The first-known use of the word in English occurred just after 1700.

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