# Denominator (Mathematics Glossary)

# What Is the Denominator?

The denominator is the number written below the line of a fraction.The denominator of this fraction is 4.

(The number above the line is called the numerator. It is 1 in the fraction above).

#### Dictionary Definition

The Oxford English Dictionary defines the denominator as "The number written below the line in a vulgar fraction, which gives the denomination or value of the parts into which the integer is divided."# Examples of Denominators

The denominator of the fraction^{2}/

_{3}(two-thirds) is 3. The denominator of the fraction

^{5}/

_{7}(five-sevenths) is 7

# What Does the Denominator Mean?

A fraction is a part of a whole number.The denominator tells you how many equal parts the whole is divided into.

(The numerator tells you how many parts of the whole number there are).

# Visualizing the Denominator

Thinking of slices of a cake is a useful way of visualizing the denominator. A fraction is a part of a whole number. So it can be visualized as a number of slices of cake, which are parts of the whole cake.The

**denominator**tells you how many slices the cake is cut into:

- A denominator of 1 means the cake is left whole.

- A denominator of 2 means the cake is cut into 2 equal slices.

- A denominator of 3 means the cake is cut into 3 equal slices.

**numerator**tells you how many slices are in the fraction. In our example above, we have included 1 slice of the 3 equal slices. The numerator of this fraction is 1.)

##### Interactive Test

**show**

Here's a second test on the denominator.

Here's a third test on the denominator.

##### Note

# What Is a Fraction?

A fraction is a part of a whole number.Fractions consist of a numerator and a denominator.

There are three different types of fractions:

# Fractions with Larger Denominators Are Smaller

If fractions have the same numerator, having a larger denominator makes the fraction smaller.If you visualize the denominator as the number of slices a cake is cut into, then having a larger denominator means:

- having more slices.
- each slice getting smaller.

(If the numerator is the same, then the number of slices we are considering stays the same).