What does reduce mean?

Definitions for reduce

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word reduce.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. reduce, cut down, cut back, trim, trim down, trim back, cut, bring downverb

    cut down on; make a reduction in

    "reduce your daily fat intake"; "The employer wants to cut back health benefits"

  2. reduceverb

    make less complex

    "reduce a problem to a single question"

  3. reduceverb

    bring to humbler or weaker state or condition

    "He reduced the population to slavery"

  4. reduceverb

    simplify the form of a mathematical equation of expression by substituting one term for another

  5. reduceverb

    lower in grade or rank or force somebody into an undignified situation

    "She reduced her niece to a servant"

  6. reduce, come down, boil downverb

    be the essential element

    "The proposal boils down to a compromise"

  7. shrink, reduceverb

    reduce in size; reduce physically

    "Hot water will shrink the sweater"; "Can you shrink this image?"

  8. reduceverb

    lessen and make more modest

    "reduce one's standard of living"

  9. reduce, scale downverb

    make smaller

    "reduce an image"

  10. deoxidize, deoxidise, reduceverb

    to remove oxygen from a compound, or cause to react with hydrogen or form a hydride, or to undergo an increase in the number of electrons

  11. reduce, tightenverb

    narrow or limit

    "reduce the influx of foreigners"

  12. repress, quash, keep down, subdue, subjugate, reduceverb

    put down by force or intimidation

    "The government quashes any attempt of an uprising"; "China keeps down her dissidents very efficiently"; "The rich landowners subjugated the peasants working the land"

  13. reduceverb

    undergo meiosis

    "The cells reduce"

  14. reduceverb

    reposition (a broken bone after surgery) back to its normal site

  15. reduceverb

    destress and thus weaken a sound when pronouncing it

  16. abridge, foreshorten, abbreviate, shorten, cut, contract, reduceverb

    reduce in scope while retaining essential elements

    "The manuscript must be shortened"

  17. boil down, reduce, decoct, concentrateverb

    be cooked until very little liquid is left

    "The sauce should reduce to one cup"

  18. reduce, boil down, concentrateverb

    cook until very little liquid is left

    "The cook reduced the sauce by boiling it for a long time"

  19. dilute, thin, thin out, reduce, cutverb

    lessen the strength or flavor of a solution or mixture

    "cut bourbon"

  20. reduce, melt off, lose weight, slim, slenderize, thin, slim downverb

    take off weight


  1. Reduceverb

    (Chem.) To add an electron to an atom or ion. Specifically: To remove oxygen from; to deoxidize. (Metallurgy) To bring to the metallic state by separating from combined oxygen and impurities; as, metals are reduced from their ores. (Chem.) To combine with, or to subject to the action of, hydrogen or any other reducing agent; as, ferric iron is reduced to ferrous iron; aldehydes can be reduced to alcohols by lithium hydride; -- opposed to oxidize.


  1. reduceverb

    To bring down the size, quantity, quality, value or intensity of something; to diminish, to lower, to impair.

  2. reduceverb

    To lose weight.

  3. reduceverb

    To bring to an inferior rank; to degrade, to demote.

  4. reduceverb

    To humble; to conquer; to subdue; to capture.

  5. reduceverb

    To bring to an inferior state or condition.

  6. reduceverb

    To decrease the liquid content of food by boiling much of its water off.

  7. reduceverb

    To add electrons / hydrogen or to remove oxygen.

  8. reduceverb

    To produce metal from ore by removing nonmetallic elements in a smelter.

  9. reduceverb

    To simplify an equation or formula without changing its value.

  10. reduceverb

    To convert to written form (Usage note: this verb almost always take the phrase "to writing").

  11. Etymology: reducere, present active infinitive of reduco; from re-, + duco. See duke, and compare with redoubt.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To REDUCEverb

    Etymology: reduco, Lat. reduire, Fr.

    Abate the edge of traitors, gracious lord!
    That would reduce these bloody days again. William Shakespeare.

    It were but just
    And equal to reduce me to my dust,
    Desirous to resign and render back
    All I receiv’d. John Milton.

    That temper in the archbishop, who licensed their most pernicious writings, left his successor a very difficult work to do, to reform and reduce a church into order, that had been so long neglected, and so ill filled. Edward Hyde.

    A diaphanous body, reduced to very minute parts, thereby acquires many little surfaces in a narrow compass. Boyle.

    His ire will quite consume us, and reduce
    To nothing this essential. John Milton.

    The ordinary smallest measure is looked on as an unit in number, when the mind by division would reduce them into less fractions. John Locke.

    There is nothing so bad, but a man may lay hold of something about it, that will afford matter of excuse; nor nothing so excellent, but a man may fasten upon something belonging to it, whereby to reduce it. John Tillotson.

    The most prudent part was his moderation and indulgence, not reducing them to desperation. John Arbuthnot, on Coins.

    Under thee, as head supreme,
    Thrones, princedoms, pow’rs, dominions I reduce. John Milton.

    To have this project reduced to practice, there seems to want nothing.

    There left desert utmost hell,
    Reduc’d in careful watch round their metropolis. John Milton.



    Reduce is a general-purpose computer algebra system geared towards applications in physics. The development of the Reduce computer algebra system was started in the 1960s by Anthony C. Hearn. Since then, many scientists from all over the world have contributed to its development under his direction. Reduce is written entirely in its own LISP dialect called Portable Standard Lisp, expressed in an ALGOL-like syntax called RLISP. The latter is used as a basis for Reduce's user-level language. Implementations of Reduce are available on most variants of Unix, Linux, Microsoft Windows, or Apple Macintosh systems by using an underlying Portable Standard Lisp or Codemist Standard LISP implementation. The Julia package Reduce.jl uses Reduce as a backend and implements its semantics in Julia style. Reduce was open sourced in December 2008 and is available for free under a modified BSD license on SourceForge. Previously it had cost $695.


  1. reduce

    To reduce means to make something smaller or less in amount, degree, or size. It can also refer to bringing down the degree of complexity or difficulty of something. In a broader context, it could denote the conclusion or result obtained after breaking down, analyzing or decreasing something.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Reducenoun

    to bring or lead back to any former place or condition

  2. Reducenoun

    to bring to any inferior state, with respect to rank, size, quantity, quality, value, etc.; to diminish; to lower; to degrade; to impair; as, to reduce a sergeant to the ranks; to reduce a drawing; to reduce expenses; to reduce the intensity of heat

  3. Reducenoun

    to bring to terms; to humble; to conquer; to subdue; to capture; as, to reduce a province or a fort

  4. Reducenoun

    to bring to a certain state or condition by grinding, pounding, kneading, rubbing, etc.; as, to reduce a substance to powder, or to a pasty mass; to reduce fruit, wood, or paper rags, to pulp

  5. Reducenoun

    to bring into a certain order, arrangement, classification, etc.; to bring under rules or within certain limits of descriptions and terms adapted to use in computation; as, to reduce animals or vegetables to a class or classes; to reduce a series of observations in astronomy; to reduce language to rules

  6. Reducenoun

    to change, as numbers, from one denomination into another without altering their value, or from one denomination into others of the same value; as, to reduce pounds, shillings, and pence to pence, or to reduce pence to pounds; to reduce days and hours to minutes, or minutes to days and hours

  7. Reducenoun

    to change the form of a quantity or expression without altering its value; as, to reduce fractions to their lowest terms, to a common denominator, etc

  8. Reducenoun

    to bring to the metallic state by separating from impurities; hence, in general, to remove oxygen from; to deoxidize; to combine with, or to subject to the action of, hydrogen; as, ferric iron is reduced to ferrous iron; or metals are reduced from their ores; -- opposed to oxidize

  9. Reducenoun

    to restore to its proper place or condition, as a displaced organ or part; as, to reduce a dislocation, a fracture, or a hernia

  10. Etymology: [L. reducere, reductum; pref. red-. re-, re- + ducere to lead. See Duke, and cf. Redoubt, n.]

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Reduce

    rē-dūs′, v.t. to bring into a lower state, as to reduce the ores of silver: to lessen: to impoverish: to subdue: to arrange: (arith. and alg.) to change numbers or quantities from one denomination into another: to reduce to its proper form, as to reduce a fracture: to bring into a new form, as to reduce Latin to English: to weaken: to bring into a class: (Scots law) to annul by legal means: (mil.) to strike off the pay-roll.—ns. Reduc′er, one who reduces: a joint-piece for connecting pipes of varying diameter; Reducibil′ity, Reduc′ibleness, the quality of being reducible.—adj. Reduc′ible, that may be reduced.—ns. Reduc′ing-scale, a scale used by surveyors for reducing chains and links to acres and roods; Reduc′tion, act of reducing or state of being reduced: diminution: subjugation: a rule for changing numbers or quantities from one denomination to another.—adj. Reduc′tive, having the power to reduce.—Reduce to the ranks, to degrade, for misconduct, to the condition of a private soldier; Reductio ad absurdum, the proof of a proposition by proving the falsity of its contradictory opposite; Reduction works, smelting works. [L. reducĕre, reductumre-, back, ducĕre, to lead.]

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'reduce' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #1458

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'reduce' in Written Corpus Frequency: #2091

  3. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'reduce' in Verbs Frequency: #130

How to pronounce reduce?

How to say reduce in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of reduce in Chaldean Numerology is: 7

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of reduce in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Examples of reduce in a Sentence

  1. Brooks Hays:

    Fill your mouth with marbles and make a speech. Every day reduce the number of marbles in your mouth and make a speech. You will soon become an accredited public speaker -- as soon as you have lost all your marbles.

  2. William Wright:

    Business will continue to leak from London to the EU, with more activity being booked through local subsidiaries, this will reduce the UK's influence in European banking and finance, reduce tax receipts from the industry, and reduce financial services exports to the EU.

  3. David Kaplan:

    The presumption is we're going to do better because of the sustainability element here -- to reduce the land footprint, reduce the water needs and reduce some of the waste streams that go out from feedlots.

  4. Kahlil Gibran:

    When we turn to one another for counsel we reduce the number of our enemies.

  5. Jason Houle:

    Therefore, if we want to reduce the financial devastation associated with illness, a sensible way to do it would be to strengthen the social safety net and reduce the cost of health care, the ACA tries to do both of these things, though we would need more evidence to know whether policies like the ACA can break the link between becoming ill and foreclosure.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for reduce

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • reduirCatalan, Valencian
  • abnehmen, reduzieren, herabsetzenGerman
  • reducirSpanish
  • taandamaEstonian
  • کاستنPersian
  • huonontaa, keventyä, supistaa, laskea, kukistaa, alistaa, pelkistää, vähentää, alentaa, keittää kokoon, nöyryyttää, pienentää, sieventää, laihtuaFinnish
  • réduireFrench
  • reducirGalician
  • lever, leigáz, csökkent, besűrítHungarian
  • փոքրացնել, նվազեցնելArmenian
  • dineskarIdo
  • degradare, sottomettere, ridurre in cattività, dimagrire, ridurre, retrocedereItalian
  • 煮詰める, 下げる, 鎮める, 減らす, 約分, 鎮圧, 簡約, 切り詰める, 削減, 減る, 強いる, 不純物を取り除く, 還元Japanese
  • 줄이다Korean
  • dēdūcōLatin
  • pamazināt, samazināt, mazinātLatvian
  • whakamimitiMāori
  • verminderen, verlagenDutch
  • redusereNorwegian
  • degradować, obniżyć, zmniejszać, schudnąć, stracić na wadzę, obniżać, skrócić, uprościć, zeszczupleć, wytopić, zmniejszyć, skracać, wytapiać, zdegradować, upraszczaćPolish
  • emagrecer, diminuir, rebaixar, reduzirPortuguese
  • redutgear, reduzir, redür, redutgier, reducir, redüerRomansh
  • reduce, diminua, micșoraRomanian
  • уменьшить, снизить, понижать, понизить, уменьшать, снижать, упрощать, худеть, упроститьRussian
  • ลดThai
  • 減少Chinese

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"reduce." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 26 Sep. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/reduce>.

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    pass through the tissue or substance or its pores or interstices, as of gas
    • A. transpire
    • B. abash
    • C. loom
    • D. rumpus

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