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characteristic

## characteristic

```  4  definitions  found

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

3.  A  table  for  facilitating  reference  to  topics,  names  and
the  like  in  a  book;  --  usually  alphabetical  in
arrangement,  and  printed  at  the  end  of  the  volume.

4.  A  prologue  indicating  what  follows.  [Obs.]  --Shak.

5.  (Anat.)  The  second  digit,  that  next  pollex,  in  the  manus,
or  hand;  the  forefinger;  index  finger.

6.  (Math.)  The  figure  or  letter  which  shows  the  power  or  root
of  a  quantity;  the  exponent.  [In  this  sense  the  plural  is
always  {indices}.]

{Index  error},  the  error  in  the  reading  of  a  mathematical
instrument  arising  from  the  zero  of  the  index  not  being  in
complete  adjustment  with  that  of  the  limb,  or  with  its
theoretically  perfect  position  in  the  instrument;  a
correction  to  be  applied  to  the  instrument  readings  equal
to  the  error  of  the  zero  adjustment.

{Index  expurgatorius}.  [L.]  See  {Index  prohibitorius}
(below).

{Index  finger}.  See  {Index},  5.

{Index  glass},  the  mirror  on  the  index  of  a  quadrant,
sextant,  etc

{Index  hand},  the  pointer  or  hand  of  a  clock,  watch,  or  other
registering  machine;  a  hand  that  points  to  something

{Index  of  a  logarithm}  (Math.),  the  integral  part  of  the
logarithm,  and  always  one  less  than  the  number  of  integral
figures  in  the  given  number.  It  is  also  called  the
{characteristic}.

{Index  of  refraction},  or  {Refractive  index}  (Opt.),  the
number  which  expresses  the  ratio  of  the  sine  of  the  angle
of  incidence  to  the  sine  of  the  angle  of  refraction.  Thus
the  index  of  refraction  for  sulphur  is  2,  because  when
light  passes  out  of  air  into  sulphur,  the  sine  of  the
angle  of  incidence  is  double  the  sine  of  the  angle  of
refraction.

{Index  plate},  a  graduated  circular  plate,  or  one  with
circular  rows  of  holes  differently  spaced;  used  in
machines  for  graduating  circles,  cutting  gear  teeth,  etc

{Index  prohibitorius}  [L.],  or  {Prohibitory  index}  (R.  C.
Ch.),  a  catalogue  of  books  which  are  forbidden  by  the
church  to  be  read;  the  index  expurgatorius  [L.],  or
expurgatory  index,  is  a  catalogue  of  books  from  which
passages  marked  as  against  faith  or  morals  must  be  removed
before  Catholics  can  read  them  These  catalogues  are
published  with  additions,  from  time  to  time,  by  the
Congregation  of  the  Index,  composed  of  cardinals,
theologians,  etc.,  under  the  sanction  of  the  pope.  --Hook.

{Index  rerum}  [L.],  a  tabulated  and  alphabetized  notebook,
for  systematic  preservation  of  items,  quotations,  etc

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

Characteristic  \Char`ac*ter*is"tic\,  a.  [Gr.  ?:  cf  F.
charact['e]ristique.]
Pertaining  to  or  serving  to  constitute,  the  character;
showing  the  character,  or  distinctive  qualities  or  traits,  of
a  person  or  thing  peculiar;  distinctive.

Characteristic  clearness  of  temper.  --Macaulay.

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

Characteristic  \Char`ac*ter*is"tic\,  n.
1.  A  distinguishing  trait,  quality,  or  property;  an  element
of  character;  that  which  characterized.  --Pope.

The  characteristics  of  a  true  critic.  --Johnson.

2.  (Math.)  The  integral  part  (whether  positive  or  negative)
of  a  logarithm.

From  WordNet  r  1.6  [wn]:

characteristic
adj  :  typical  or  distinctive;  "heard  my  friend's  characteristic
laugh";  "red  and  gold  are  the  characteristic  colors  of
autumn";  "stripes  characteristic  of  the  zebra"  [ant:  {uncharacteristic}]
n  1:  a  prominent  aspect  of  something:  "the  map  showed  roads  and
other  features";  "generosity  is  one  of  his  best
characteristics"  [syn:  {feature}]
2:  a  distinguishing  quality
3:  the  integer  part  (positive  or  negative)  of  the
representation  of  a  logarithm;  in  the  expression  log  643  =
2.808  the  characteristic  is  2
```