Negative Neg"a*tive (n[e^]g"[.a]*t[i^]v), a. [F. n['e]gatif, L. negativus, fr. negare to deny. See {Negation}.] 1. Denying; implying, containing, or asserting denial, negation or refusal; returning the answer no to an inquiry or request; refusing assent; as, a negative answer; a negative opinion; -- opposed to {affirmative}. [1913 Webster]

If thou wilt confess, Or else be impudently negative. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

Denying me any power of a negative voice. --Eikon Basilike. [1913 Webster]

Something between an affirmative bow and a negative shake. --Dickens. [1913 Webster]

2. Not positive; without affirmative statement or demonstration; indirect; consisting in the absence of something; privative; as, a negative argument; negative evidence; a negative morality; negative criticism. [1913 Webster]

There in another way of denying Christ, . . . which is negative, when we do not acknowledge and confess him. --South. [1913 Webster]

3. (Logic) Asserting absence of connection between a subject and a predicate; as, a negative proposition. [1913 Webster]

4. (Photog.) Of or pertaining to a picture upon glass or other material, in which the lights and shades of the original, and the relations of right and left, are reversed. [1913 Webster]

5. (Chem.) Metalloidal; nonmetallic; -- contrasted with {positive} or {basic}; as, the nitro group is negative. [1913 Webster]

Note: This word, derived from electro-negative, is now commonly used in a more general sense, when acidiferous is the intended signification. [1913 Webster]

{Negative crystal}. (a) A cavity in a mineral mass, having the form of a crystal. (b) A crystal which has the power of negative double refraction. See {refraction}.

{negative electricity} (Elec.), the kind of electricity which is developed upon resin or ebonite when rubbed, or which appears at that pole of a voltaic battery which is connected with the plate most attacked by the exciting liquid; -- formerly called {resinous electricity}. Opposed to {positive electricity}. Formerly, according to Franklin's theory of a single electric fluid, negative electricity was supposed to be electricity in a degree below saturation, or the natural amount for a given body. See {Electricity}.

{Negative eyepiece}. (Opt.) see under {Eyepiece}.

{Negative quantity} (Alg.), a quantity preceded by the negative sign, or which stands in the relation indicated by this sign to some other quantity. See {Negative sign} (below).

{Negative rotation}, right-handed rotation. See {Right-handed}, 3.

{Negative sign}, the sign -, or {minus} (opposed in signification to +, or {plus}), indicating that the quantity to which it is prefixed is to be subtracted from the preceding quantity, or is to be reckoned from zero or cipher in the opposite direction to that of quanties having the sign plus either expressed or understood; thus, in a - b, b is to be substracted from a, or regarded as opposite to it in value; and -10[deg] on a thermometer means 10[deg] below the zero of the scale. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • minus — minus …   Deutsch Wörterbuch

  • minus — [ minys ] ou minus habens [ minysabɛ̃s ] n. • 1836 minus habens; 1833 minus habentes plur.; lat. « ayant moins » ♦ Fam. Individu incapable ou peu intelligent. Elle « traitait Paul comme un minus habens » (Cocteau). Une, des minus. ⇒ crétin,… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

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  • minus — ► PREPOSITION 1) with the subtraction of. 2) (of temperature) falling below zero by: minus 40° centigrade. 3) informal lacking: he was minus a finger. ► ADJECTIVE 1) (before a number) below zero; negative. 2) (after a grade) slightly below: C… …   English terms dictionary