rational

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Related to rational: rational function

rational

Maths
1. expressible as a ratio of two integers or polynomials
2. a rational number
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005

rational

[Mathematics] a fractional number n/d, where n and d are integers, n is the numerator and d is the denominator. The set of all rational numbers is usually called Q. Computers do not usually deal with rational numbers but instead convert them to real numbers which are represented (approximately in some cases) as floating-point numbers. Compare irrational.
References in classic literature ?
If it's rational, you'll be able to keep up the same system with hired labor," said Sviazhsky.
For example, I might give you what they call the rational explanation, to begin with.
He was extremely curious to know "from what part of the country I came, and how I was taught to imitate a rational creature; because the YAHOOS (whom he saw I exactly resembled in my head, hands, and face, that were only visible), with some appearance of cunning, and the strongest disposition to mischief, were observed to be the most unteachable of all brutes." I answered, "that I came over the sea, from a far place, with many others of my own kind, in a great hollow vessel made of the bodies of trees: that my companions forced me to land on this coast, and then left me to shift for myself." It was with some difficulty, and by the help of many signs, that I brought him to understand me.
The only thing one can't say is that it's rational. The very word sticks in one's throat.
In Prince Andrew's eyes Speranski was the man he would himself have wished to be- one who explained all the facts of life reasonably, considered important only what was rational, and was capable of applying the standard of reason to everything.
"Much more rational, my dear Caroline, I dare say, but it would not be near so much like a ball."
With the fortitude of a devoted novitiate, she had resolved at oneandtwenty to complete the sacrifice, and retire from all the pleasures of life, of rational intercourse, equal society, peace and hope, to penance and mortification for ever.
In those words, Lord Montbarry stated the case to his brother from the rational point of view.
The principles of definition, the law of contradiction, the fallacy of arguing in a circle, the distinction between the essence and accidents of a thing or notion, between means and ends, between causes and conditions; also the division of the mind into the rational, concupiscent, and irascible elements, or of pleasures and desires into necessary and unnecessary-- these and other great forms of thought are all of them to be found in the Republic, and were probably first invented by Plato.
This order of truth, no matter how erroneous it may be, is the sane and normal order of truth, the rational order
for he who is intemperate [1260a] and a coward will never do what he ought: it is evident then that both parties ought to be virtuous; but there is a difference between them, as there is between those who by nature command and who by nature obey, and this originates in the soul; for in this nature has planted the governing and submitting principle, the virtues of which we say are different, as are those of a rational and an irrational being.
The fear I felt was no rational fear, but a panic terror not only of the Martians, but of the dusk and stillness all about me.

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