English edit

Etymology edit

Latin reciprocus, possibly from a phrase such as reque proque (back and forth, to and fro), from re- (back), prō (forwards) and -que (and).

Pronunciation edit

  • IPA(key): /ɹɪˈsɪpɹək(ə)l/
  • (file)

Adjective edit

reciprocal (not comparable)

  1. Of a feeling, action or such: mutual, uniformly felt or done by each party towards the other or others; two-way.
    Synonym: reciprocating
    reciprocal love
    reciprocal duties
  2. Mutually interchangeable.
    • 1725, Isaac Watts, Logick: Or, The Right Use of Reason in the Enquiry after Truth, [], 2nd edition, London: [] John Clark and Richard Hett, [], Emanuel Matthews, [], and Richard Ford, [], published 1726, →OCLC:
      These two rules will render a definition reciprocal with the thing defined.
  3. (grammar) Expressing mutual action, applied to pronouns and verbs; also in a broad sense: reflexive.
  4. (mathematics) Used to denote different kinds of mutual relation; often with reference to the substitution of reciprocals for given quantities.
  5. Done, given, felt, or owed in return.
    a reciprocal invitation to lunch

Synonyms edit

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Related terms edit

Translations edit

Noun edit

reciprocal (plural reciprocals)

  1. (arithmetic) The number obtained by dividing 1 by another given number; the result of exchanging the numerator and the denominator of a fraction.
    Synonym: multiplicative inverse
    0.5 is the reciprocal of 2.
  2. (grammar) A construction expressing mutual action.
    • 2008, Ekkehard König, Volker Gast, Reciprocals and Reflexives: Theoretical and Typological Explorations:
      Depending on where reciprocalization applies (syntax vs. lexicon), the relevant reciprocal verbs are claimed to exhibit specific properties, in particular: (i) syntactic reciprocals are fully productive whereas lexical reciprocals have only limited productivity; []

Translations edit