Napier's bones


Also found in: Thesaurus, Wikipedia.

Na·pi·er's bones

 (nā′pē-ərz, nə-pîrz′)
pl.n. (used with a sing. verb)
A set of graduated rods used to perform multiplication quickly.

[After John Napier.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Napier's bones

pl n
(Mathematics) a set of graduated rods formerly used for multiplication and division
[C17: based on a method invented by John Napier]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.Napier's bones - a set of graduated rods formerly used to do multiplication and division by a method invented by John Napier
calculating machine, calculator - a small machine that is used for mathematical calculations
plural, plural form - the form of a word that is used to denote more than one
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
He also invented the so-called "Napier's bones" and made common the use of the decimal point in arithmetic and mathematics.
Napier's bones was a precursor of which calculating device?
Napier's bones was a precursor of which sapphires collectively known as?