literal equation


From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Literal \Lit"er*al\ (l[i^]t"[~e]r*al), a. [F. lit['e]ral,
   litt['e]ral, L. litteralis, literalis, fr. littera, litera, a
   letter. See Letter.]
   1. According to the letter or verbal expression; real; not
      figurative or metaphorical; as, the literal meaning of a
      phrase.
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            It hath but one simple literal sense whose light the
            owls can not abide.                   --Tyndale.
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   2. Following the letter or exact words; not free.
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            A middle course between the rigor of literal
            translations and the liberty of paraphrasts.
                                                  --Hooker.
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   3. Consisting of, or expressed by, letters.
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            The literal notation of numbers was known to
            Europeans before the ciphers.         --Johnson.
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   4. Giving a strict or literal construction; unimaginative;
      matter-of-fact; -- applied to persons.
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   Literal contract (Law), a contract of which the whole
      evidence is given in writing. --Bouvier.

   Literal equation (Math.), an equation in which known
      quantities are expressed either wholly or in part by means
      of letters; -- distinguished from a numerical equation.
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