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In mathematics, given a group G under a binary operation ∗, a subset H of G is called a subgroup of G if H also forms a group under the operation ∗. More precisely, H is a subgroup of G if the restriction of ∗ to H × H is a group operation on H. This is usually denoted HG, read as "H is a subgroup of G".

The trivial subgroup of any group is the subgroup {e} consisting of just the identity element.

A proper subgroup of a group G is a subgroup H which is a proper subset of G (i.e. HG). This is usually represented notationally by H < G, read as "H is a proper subgroup of G". Some authors also exclude the trivial group from being proper (i.e. {e} ≠ HG).<ref>Hungerford (1974), p. 32</ref><ref>Artin (2011), p. 43</ref>

If H is a subgroup of G, then G is sometimes called an overgroup of H.

The same definitions apply more generally when G is an arbitrary semigroup, but this article will only deal with subgroups of groups. The group G is sometimes denoted by the ordered pair (G, ∗), usually to emphasize the operation ∗ when G carries multiple algebraic or other structures.

This article will write ab for ab, as is usual.


Subgroup sections
Intro  Basic properties of subgroups  Cosets and Lagrange's theorem   See also    Notes    References   

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