from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A plane curve formed by the intersection of a right circular cone and a plane parallel to an element of the cone or by the locus of points equidistant from a fixed line and a fixed point not on the line.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The conic section formed by the intersection of a cone with a plane parallel to a tangent plane to the cone; the locus of points equidistant from a fixed point (the focus) and line (the directrix).
- n. The explicit drawing of a parallel between two essentially dissimilar things, especially with a moral or didactic purpose. A parable.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A kind of curve; one of the conic sections formed by the intersection of the surface of a cone with a plane parallel to one of its sides. It is a curve, any point of which is equally distant from a fixed point, called the focus, and a fixed straight line, called the directrix. See focus.
- n. One of a group of curves defined by the equation y = axn where n is a positive whole number or a positive fraction. For the cubical parabola n = 3; for the semicubical parabola n = 3/2. See under cubical, and semicubical. The parabolas have infinite branches, but no rectilineal asymptotes.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Same as parabole.
- n. A curve commonly defined as the intersection of a cone with a Plane parallel with its side.
- n. By extension, any algebraical curve, or branch of a curve, having the line at infinity as a real tangent.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a plane curve formed by the intersection of a right circular cone and a plane parallel to an element of the curve
New Latin, from Greek parabolē, comparison, application, parabola (from the relationship between the line joining the vertices of a conic and the line through its focus and parallel to its directrix), from paraballein, to compare; see parable.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Ancient Greek παραβολή (parabolē), from παραβάλλω (paraballō, "I set side by side"), from παρά (para, "beside") + βάλλω (ballō, "I throw"). (Wiktionary)