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constant

## constant

```  4  definitions  found

From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]:

Constant  \Con"stant\,  n.
1.  (Astron.)  A  number  whose  value,  when  ascertained  (as  by
observation)  and  substituted  in  a  general  mathematical
formula  expressing  an  astronomical  law,  completely
determines  that  law  and  enables  predictions  to  be  made  of
its  effect  in  particular  cases.

2.  (Physics)  A  number  expressing  some  property  or  condition
of  a  substance  or  of  an  instrument  of  precision;  as  the
dielectric  constant  of  quartz;  the  collimation  constant  of
a  transit  instrument.

{Aberration  constant},  or  {Constant  of  aberration}  (Astron.),
a  number  which  by  substitution  in  the  general  formula  for
aberration  enables  a  prediction  to  be  made  of  the  effect
of  aberration  on  a  star  anywhere  situated.  Its  value  is
20[sec].47.

{Constant  of  integration}  (Math.),  an  undetermined  constant
added  to  every  result  of  integration.

{Gravitation  constant}  (Physics),  the  acceleration  per  unit
of  time  produced  by  the  attraction  of  a  unit  of  mass  at
unit  distance.  When  this  is  known  the  acceleration
produced  at  any  distance  can  be  calculated.

{Solar  constant}  (Astron.),  the  quantity  of  heat  received  by
the  earth  from  the  sun  in  a  unit  of  time.  It  is  on  the  C.
G.  S.  system,  0.0417  small  calories  per  square  centimeter
per  second  --Young.

From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]:

Constant  \Con"stant\,  a.  [L.  onstans  -antis,  p.  pr  of  constare
to  stand  firm,  to  be  consistent;  con-  +  stare  to  stand:  cf
F.  constant.  See  {Stand}  and  cf  {Cost},  v.  t.]
1.  Firm;  solid;  fixed;  immovable;  --  opposed  to  fluid.  [Obs.]

If  .  .  .  you  mix  them  you  may  turn  these  two  fluid
liquors  into  a  constant  body.  --Boyle.

2.  Not  liable,  or  given  to  change;  permanent;  regular;
not  fickle.

Both  loving  one  fair  maid,  they  yet  remained
constant  friends.  --Sir  P.
Sidney.

I  am  constant  to  my  purposes.  --Shak.

His  gifts,  his  constant  ourtship  nothing  gained.
--Dryden.

Onward  the  constant  current  sweeps.  --Longfellow.

3.  (Math.  &  Physics)  Remaining  unchanged  or  invariable,  as  a
quantity,  force,  law,  etc

4.  Consistent;  logical.  [Obs.]  --Shak.

Syn:  Fixed;  steadfast;  unchanging;  permanent;  unalterable;
immutable;  invariable;  perpetual;  continual;  resolute;
firm;  unshaken;  determined.

Usage:  {Constant},  {Continual},  {Perpetual}.  These  words  are
sometimes  used  in  an  absolute  and  sometimes  in  a
qualified  sense  Constant  denotes,  in  its  absolute
sense  unchangeably  fixed;  as  a  constant  mind  or
purpose.  In  its  qualified  sense  it  marks  something  as
a  ``standing''  fact  or  occurence  as  liable  to
constant  interruptions;  constantly  called  for
Continual,  in  its  absolute  sense  coincides  with
continuous.  See  {Continuous}.  In  its  qualified  sense
it  describes  a  thing  as  occuring  in  steady  and  rapid
succession;  as  a  round  of  continual  calls;
continually  changing.  Perpetual  denotes,  in  its
absolute  sense  what  literally  never  ceases  or  comes
to  an  end  as  perpetual  motion.  In  its  qualified
sense  it  is  used  hyperbolically,  and  denotes  that
which  rarely  ceases;  as  perpetual  disturbance;
perpetual  noise;  perpetual  intermeddling.

From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]:

Constant  \Con"stant\,  n.
1.  That  which  is  not  subject  to  change;  that  which  is
invariable.

2.  (Math.)  A  quantity  that  does  not  change  its  value;  --  used

{Absolute  constant}  (Math.),  one  whose  value  is  absolutely
the  same  under  all  circumstances,  as  the  number  10,  or  any
numeral.

{Arbitrary  constant},  an  undetermined  constant  in  a
differential  equation  having  the  same  value  during  all
changes  in  the  values  of  the  variables.

From  WordNet  r  1.6  [wn]:

constant
adj  1:  persistent  in  occurrence  and  unvarying  in  nature;
"maintained  a  constant  temperature";  "a  constant
beat";  "principles  of  unvarying  validity";  "a  steady
breeze"  [syn:  {changeless},  {invariant},  {steady},  {unvarying}]
2:  continually  recurring  or  continuing  without  interruption;
"constant  repetition  of  the  exercise";  "constant  chatter
of  monkeys"
3:  steadfast  in  purpose  or  devotion  or  affection;  "a  man
constant  in  adherence  to  his  ideals";  "a  constant  lover";
"constant  as  the  northern  star"  [ant:  {inconstant}]
4:  uninterrupted  in  time  and  indefinitely  long  continuing;  "the
ceaseless  thunder  of  surf";  "in  constant  pain";  "night  and
day  we  live  with  the  incessant  noise  of  the  city";  "the
never-ending  search  for  happiness";  "the  perpetual
struggle  to  maintain  standards  in  a  democracy";  "man's
unceasing  warfare  with  drought  and  isolation";
"unremitting  demands  of  hunger"  [syn:  {ceaseless},  {incessant},
{never-ending},  {perpetual},  {unceasing},  {unremitting}]
n  1:  a  quantity  that  does  not  vary  [syn:  {constant  quantity}]
2:  a  number  representing  a  quantity  assumed  to  have  a  fixed
value  in  a  specified  mathematical  context;  "the  velocity
of  light  is  a  constant"
```