One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1short for ordinal number
- ‘Form numbers are conceived as ordinals, with units conceived as being well ordered.’
- ‘In 1907 he introduced special types of ordinals in an attempt to prove Cantor's continuum hypothesis.’
- ‘In this latter book she presented a 30 page appendix on the theory of infinite cardinals and ordinals.’
- ‘In his work he clarified a remark by Russell and formulated precisely the paradox of the largest ordinal.’
- ‘Having solved the open problem posed by Davenport on writing numbers as the sums of fifth powers, Conway began to become interested in infinite ordinals.’
historical A service book, especially one with the forms of service used at ordinations.
- ‘The report continues with a discussion of the various ministries of deacons, including the basis as expressed in the ordinal at ordination in a new trial liturgy in the Diocese of Salisbury.’
1Relating to the order of something in a series.‘ordinal scales’
- ‘Children were asked whether they could determine, based on their ordinal position within different classes and families, which of two turtles was faster or taller.’
- ‘Data indicating familial and ordinal positions are not available.’
- ‘The answers were transformed to an ordinal scale with values from 0 to 6.’
- ‘The Mann-Whitney U test is appropriate when the independent variable has two levels and the dependent variable is measured on an ordinal scale.’
- ‘To account for this bias, we transformed the outcome variables to an ordinal scale with 5 categories.’
- 1.1 Relating to an ordinal number.
Relating to a taxonomic order.
- ‘The present study suggests that tube-foot morphology may be useful as a taxonomic character at the ordinal level.’
- ‘It is difficult to establish an accurate ordinal assignment of the taxa described above based on the current knowledge.’
- ‘The same procedure was followed for the two most abundant taxa identified at the ordinal level.’
- ‘While all of the phyla but one were established during the Cambrian explosion, taxonomic increases during the Ordovician were manifest at lower taxonomic levels although ordinal level diversity doubled.’
- ‘Mammalian phylogenetics at the ordinal level remains one of the outstanding problems in systematics because of the lack of congruence between different data sets.’
Middle English (in ordinal (sense 2 of the noun)): the noun from medieval Latin ordinale (neuter); the adjective from late Latin ordinalis ‘relating to order in a series’, from Latin ordo, ordin- (see order).
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