Definition of subscript in English:



  • (of a letter, figure, or symbol) written or printed below the line.

    • ‘Of course we have modernised the notation, for example subscript notation was not used in Parseval's time, and we have also corrected his theorem for he omitted the first 2 on the left hand side.’
    • ‘But, what is interesting here is that this particular industrial strength beast has subscript keys.’
    • ‘The average number of the repetitions is shown as a subscript index’
    • ‘Here and henceforth, the sum is over all mutations, the subscript E denotes segregating [equilibrium (E)] mutations, and the overbar indicates the arithmetic mean.’
    • ‘We refer to the frequencies of double reduction and recombination fraction between the markers for parent P by, ß, and without the subscript P, unless otherwise specified.’


  • 1A subscript letter, figure, or symbol.

    • ‘Note that superscripts represent ligand sites (if known) and subscripts refer to processes.’
    • ‘For convenience, we consider only the case of two alleles at each of the three loci and the notation in this case is varied to reduce the superscripts and subscripts.’
    • ‘Lowercase letters and subscripts are used identically to those described for variance components.’
    • ‘For convenience, we henceforth drop the superscripts and subscripts indicating deme identities.’
    • ‘When dealing with ionic compounds, the smallest whole-number subscripts are always used.’
    1. 1.1Computing A symbol (notionally written as a subscript but in practice usually not) used in a program, alone or with others, to specify one of the elements of an array.
      • ‘Overloading - getitem - implies the user can ask for any subscript in any order.’
      • ‘Conventionally solving these two programming issues involves writing explicit programming code to manually adjust the subscripts in a two-dimensional array.’
      appendix, codicil, postscript, afterword, tailpiece, rider, coda, supplement, accompaniment
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Early 18th century: from Latin subscript- ‘written below’, from the verb subscribere (see subscribe).