Main definitions of multiply in English

: multiply1multiply2



  • 1 Obtain from (a number) another that contains the first number a specified number of times.

    ‘I asked you to multiply fourteen by nineteen’
    [no object] ‘we all know how to multiply by ten’
    • ‘To find the probability that both people have this birthday, we have to multiply their separate probabilities.’
    • ‘He made a mechanical device, Gunter's scale, to multiply numbers based on the logs using a single scale and a pair of dividers.’
    • ‘He described a computational trick for multiplying a number by 11.’
    • ‘Play games with your child: throw two dice and multiply the numbers, then move on to multiplying the sum of two throws by the sum of two throws.’
    • ‘If you multiplied this number out, you would have a number 1,791,864 digits long.’
    • ‘Also, Alice knows the quick method of multiplying a number by eleven.’
    • ‘The objects in the two piles are counted, the two numbers are multiplied and the result is stored somewhere.’
    • ‘The way most people learn to multiply large numbers looks something like this.’
    • ‘He correctly states that: -… a number multiplied by zero is zero, and a number remains the same when zero is subtracted from it.’
    • ‘Hint: multiply your number by 5 and see if it is near a number in the Lucas series.’
    • ‘As the above table of calculations demonstrates, the more digits we use of the decimal expansion of 2, the more nines we get after the decimal point when we multiply the number by itself.’
    • ‘My head tells me that I am teaching an inaccurate mathematical concept when I tell children that the quick way to multiply a whole number by 10 is to add a zero to the right-hand end.’
    • ‘Let's see how a mathematician might understand what's going on when a negative number is multiplied by a negative number.’
    • ‘Imaginary numbers are real numbers multiplied by i.’
    • ‘One of them is the canonical method: we multiply the numbers mentioned that divide the number sought by each other; we add one to the product; this is the number sought.’
    • ‘Multiplication problems at the advanced level required multiplying a three-digit number by a one- or two-digit number.’
    • ‘The number of initial ovules (number of ovules at anthesis) from the fruits was estimated by multiplying the number of carpels by two, because each carpel always has two ovules.’
    • ‘The ratio is multiplied then by 100 to convert to percent.’
    • ‘It is very easy to multiply two numbers and get a result, but it is hard to take a result and get back the two numbers.’
    • ‘Since any number multiplied by one remains constant, the multiplicative identity is 1.’
    1. 1.1Increase or cause to increase greatly in number or quantity.
      [no object] ‘ever since I became a landlord my troubles have multiplied tenfold’
      [with object] ‘cigarette smoking combines with other factors to multiply the risks of atherosclerosis’
      • ‘Chronic dioxin exposure is believed to multiply the risk of several cancers, increase the chance of immune system disorders, and to cause liver damage.’
      • ‘For every point that the underlying asset increases, profit is multiplied by the customer's stake, and vice versa.’
      • ‘It's important because it multiplies the risks of a stroke or heart attack up to four times.’
      • ‘An index dominated by frothy sunrise industries multiplies the risk of investing for us all.’
      • ‘If a second engine is lost, the airplane will still fly, but the problem of increased fuel burn is multiplied.’
      • ‘Psychological distress, for example, multiplies the risk of stroke by 1.5 times.’
      • ‘I am one of those increasingly multiplying long-haired adolescent boys!’
      • ‘As this bravest and most honest of golfers made his way up the last fairway on the final day, he was greeted by applause that, had it been multiplied ten-fold, might have qualified as lukewarm.’
      • ‘Their troubles were multiplied by the fact they had been given no more information than the passengers.’
      • ‘It also greatly multiplies prospects for broad adoption, which is one of the most meaningful, quantifiable measures of success.’
      • ‘The chance of preventing a coronary event is the absolute risk multiplied by the relative risk reduction, but the question is whether the relative risk reduction is equal in patients of all ages.’
      • ‘Wrought iron greatly multiplied the possibilities of tension: much wider roof spans than those offered by timber alone were now possible.’
      • ‘We will need to multiply treatment tenfold - to the same level that we see in countries like Sweden.’
      • ‘When combined with high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol, smoking multiplies the risk of having a heart attack.’
      • ‘There is no question that the dead trees greatly multiplied the speed and intensity of the San Bernardino fires.’
      • ‘He said that slower rate of growth and rapid increase of population has multiplied the woes of Northeast and halted its economic development.’
      • ‘Now multiply their problems tenfold and one gets the idea of what a national health care system would be like in the United States with a population of 300 million people.’
      • ‘For patients who do not speak or understand the native tongue, the problems are multiplied tenfold.’
      • ‘Few institutions were closed, however, as a program of increasing classification of prisoners multiplied the accommodation required.’
      • ‘With optical component prices being cut in half every nine months, it is becoming increasingly affordable to light hundreds of fibers in each bundle, which greatly multiplies available bandwidth.’
      increase, increase exponentially, grow, become more numerous, accumulate, proliferate, mount up, mushroom, snowball, burgeon, spread, expand
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    2. 1.2[no object](of an animal or other organism) increase in number by reproducing.
      • ‘Bacteria and some viruses multiply and mutate rapidly, and can evolve much more quickly than we can develop new drugs to fight them.’
      • ‘As the cats multiplied, the rats and mice were eradicated and this led to a problem of cat over-population.’
      • ‘The goats multiply by themselves - the project runs along the lines that when your goat has a kid, you give it to your neighbour.’
      • ‘Because fleas multiply rapidly, treating fleas involves removing them form the animal's environment as well as its skin and hair.’
      • ‘If they choose the latter course, their stock of sheep will multiply (because of natural reproduction).’
      • ‘In one year, two rats can produce as many as one thousand offspring and in eight months a group of twenty mice can multiply to two thousand.’
      • ‘Species may multiply but they will tend to do so at the expense of other species.’
      • ‘Coccolithophores are single-celled organisms which multiply rapidly near the surface, shedding tiny calcium-rich scales.’
      • ‘All of these produce toxins as the bacteria multiply in the intestines after the food has been eaten.’
      • ‘Once the spores gain entry to the airways and lungs, the bacteria multiply rapidly, producing anthrax toxin in lethal quantities.’
      • ‘Within a few months a handful of mice and rats had multiplied into 60 mice and 12 rats and started to overrun their owner's house at Westhoughton.’
      • ‘And with litters of ten or more per healthy sow, the animals could multiply rapidly.’
      • ‘During the same period fallow deer numbers multiplied from a dozen or so to over 250.’
      • ‘In fact, if the individual continues to take the drug, the resistant virus will only multiply faster.’
      • ‘As the amount of farmed fish multiplies, the wild salmon stock has gone into freefall.’
      • ‘The bacteria then multiply rapidly and produce toxins, which result in the rapid progress of the disease.’
      • ‘When cooked rice is left in less than ideal conditions for four or five hours or overnight, spores are released and the bacteria multiply dangerously.’
      • ‘With a single worm capable of laying 900 eggs a year, his worms began multiplying exponentially.’
      • ‘Major people epidemics occur when a human flu virus recombines with an animal virus, an animal flu virus multiplies in man, or the existing chemicals rearrange more virulently.’
      • ‘Still the insects multiplied, and spread out all over the park.’
      breed, reproduce, procreate, propagate
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    3. 1.3Propagate (plants)
      • ‘The harvested seeds from the selected plant were multiplied for subsequent yield trials conducted for three seasons and then distributed as a new cultivar.’
      • ‘Clones of the original plant were multiplied through apomixis.’
      • ‘Instead, people could cultivate the plants for sale from seed or cuttings, thus multiplying the supply and protecting the species in wild places from human predators.’
      • ‘This is a good way to multiply your plants, free of charge.’
      • ‘The crop is normally multiplied by the use of tubers (seed potatoes) but the use of the true potato seed is becoming important.’
      • ‘Thirty preselected plants were multiplied in tissue culture and duplicates transferred to the greenhouse.’
      • ‘Somatic embryos matured in this way showed a 39% conversion rate to plantlets, which were then multiplied by micro-propagation.’


Middle English: from Old French multiplier, from Latin multiplicare.

Main definitions of multiply in English

: multiply1multiply2



  • [often as submodifier] In several different ways or respects.

    ‘multiply injured patients’
    • ‘Males and females mate multiply with the same, as well as with different, partners.’
    • ‘In and of itself, mentoring is not likely to be an effective strategy for preventing crime, or for directly solving serious social problems which are multiply determined.’
    • ‘The exhibition - elegantly conceived, formally resonant and multiply referential - has a residual effect.’
    • ‘Ironically, it is only possible to write a cultural biography of this horse, insofar as it is possible, because of his multiply commodified status.’
    • ‘But after all that is said, the accounts given are not disproved by being multiply reported.’
    • ‘Much of the role of a general practitioner in learning disability would involve coordinating and motivating the multidisciplinary team that would be needed to provide care for multiply disabled people.’
    • ‘However, the use of drug combinations is designed to limit the emergence of multiply drug resistant variants and may suppress plasma viraemia more effectively.’
    • ‘Women's experiences tend to be homogenized, and rarely are the voices heard of women from the margins who are multiply oppressed.’
    • ‘Across the range of empirical indicators relating to age, occupational status, health status and housing, it is evident that they are a group who are multiply disadvantaged.’
    • ‘Sub-optimal drug penetration also influences the emergence of multiply drug resistant variants, which may also predominate in this anatomical viral reservoir.’
    • ‘Most robust phenomenon in nature are multiply determined, which is to say that when something happens all the time there are probably a lot of independent mechanisms making it happen.’
    • ‘Her uniquely historicized renderings of song and voice attest both to the multiply ethnic heritage and to the implicit reach of her art.’
    • ‘While theorists agree that prejudice is multiply determined, few agree about what those determinants are or how they should be measured.’
    • ‘Parenteral transmission through blood and blood products is clearly evidenced by the higher detection rates among multiply transfused individuals.’
    • ‘Of course, it is one thing for a building to be multiply religiously committed, quite another for one person to be.’
    • ‘Therefore, these antimicrobial peptides might make an excellent weapon in the fight against multiply drug-resistant bacteria.’
    • ‘Proper assessment of multiply diagnosed individuals is crucial, not only initially but continuously throughout their treatment episode.’
    • ‘Small testes and large accessory glands characterize species with singly mated queens, whereas the opposite is found in species with multiply mated queens.’
    • ‘In more than a few, the reader reaches the verdict convinced that the guilty have gone free and the truth has been buried deeper than the victim's multiply autopsied corpse.’
    • ‘These phage do not block superinfection, and recombination mediated by host enzymes can occur in multiply infected hosts.’