Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

numbers /ˈnʌmbəs/ pl n
  1. informal financial statistics: let's look at last year's numbers

number /ˈnʌmbə/ n
  1. a concept of quantity that is or can be derived from a single unit, the sum of a collection of units, or zero. Every number occupies a unique position in a sequence, enabling it to be used in counting. It can be assigned to one or more sets that can be arranged in a hierarchical classification: every number is a complex number; a complex number is either an imaginary number or a real number, and the latter can be a rational number or an irrational number; a rational number is either an integer or a fraction, while an irrational number can be a transcendental number or an algebraic number
    See also cardinal number, ordinal number
  2. the symbol used to represent a number; numeral
  3. a numeral or string of numerals used to identify a person or thing, esp in numerical order: a telephone number
  4. the person or thing so identified or designated: she was number seven in the race
  5. the sum or quantity of equal or similar units or things: a large number of people
  6. one of a series, as of a magazine or periodical; issue
  7. a self-contained piece of pop or jazz music
  8. a self-contained part of an opera or other musical score, esp one for the stage
  9. a group or band of people, esp an exclusive group: he was not one of our number
  10. slang a person, esp a woman: who's that nice little number?
  11. informal an admired article, esp an item of clothing for a woman: that little number is by Dior
  12. a grammatical category for the variation in form of nouns, pronouns, and any words agreeing with them, depending on how many persons or things are referred to, esp as singular or plural in number and in some languages dual or trial
  13. any number ofseveral or many
  14. by numbers(of a drill procedure, etc) performed step by step, each move being made on the call of a number
  15. get someone's number, have someone's numberinformal to discover someone's true character or intentions
  16. one's number is upBrit informal one is finished; one is ruined or about to die
  17. without number, beyond numberof too great a quantity to be counted; innumerable
vb (mainly tr)
  1. to assign a number to
  2. to add up to; total
  3. (also intr) to list (items) one by one; enumerate
  4. (also intr) to put or be put into a group, category, etc: they were numbered among the worst hit
  5. to limit the number of: his days were numbered
Etymology: 13th Century: from Old French nombre, from Latin numerus

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