One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A straight line from any point drawn parallel to one coordinate axis and meeting the other, especially a coordinate measured parallel to the vertical.Compare with abscissa
- ‘Note that in C and D the abscissa and ordinate are swapped for presentation.’
- ‘The ordinate represents yearly expenditures on a constant dollar basis.’
- ‘The negative and positive signs on the ordinate mean, respectively, underestimation and overestimation of the expected values.’
- ‘Time in minutes is plotted along the abscissa and the cumulative number of responses is plotted on the ordinate.’
- ‘The ordinate indicates additive effects on each trait estimated by interval mapping.’
Late 17th century: from Latin linea ordinata applicata ‘line applied parallel’, from ordinare ‘put in order’.
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