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A definition states the meaning of a word using other words. This is sometimes challenging. Common dictionaries contain lexical, descriptive definitions, but there are various types of definition - all with different purposes and focuses.

A definition is a statement of the meaning of a term (a word, phrase, or other set of symbols).<ref>Bickenbach, Jerome E., and Jacqueline M. Davies. Good reasons for better arguments: An introduction to the skills and values of critical thinking. Broadview Press, 1996. p. 49</ref> Unknown extension tag "ref" Definitions can be classified into two large categories, intensional definitions (which try to give the essence of a term) and extensional definitions (which list every single object that a term describes).<ref name=Lyons>Lyons, John. "Semantics, vol. I." Cambridge: Cambridge (1977). p.158 and on.</ref> A term may have many different senses and multiple meanings, and thus require multiple definitions.<ref>Dooly, Melinda. Semantics and Pragmatics of English: Teaching English as a Foreign Language. Univ. Autònoma de Barcelona, 2006. p.48 and on</ref>Unknown extension tag "ref"

In mathematics, a definition is used to give a precise meaning to a new term, instead of describing a pre-existing term. Definitions and axioms are the basis on which all of mathematics is constructed.<ref>Richard J. Rossi

(2011) Theorems, Corollaries, Lemmas, and Methods of Proof. John Wiley & Sons p.4</ref>

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