# Negative Numbers

## What Is a Negative Number?

A negative number is a number less than zero.

### Dictionary Definition

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a negative number as "less than zero and opposite in sign to a positive."

## Examples of Negative Numbers

A negative number is any number less than zero. Negative numbers can be any type of number: whole numbers, fractions, or irrational numbers.

Some of examples of negative numbers are given below: ## How Are Negative Numbers Written?

Negative numbers will have a minus sign ('−') in front of them. For example, the negative number negative two can be written as: ## Negative Numbers on the Number Line

The image below shows the negative numbers on the number line. Negative numbers are to the left of 0: Note: 0 is not a negative number. Negative numbers can be fractional, so they can be between the numbers labelled.

## Ordering of Negative Numbers

Look at the order of the negative numbers on the number line above.

The order (left to right) goes: −5, −4, −3, −2, −1.

This is the opposite of how we'd write positive numbers: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.

This tells us about the ordering of negative numbers.

For a negative number, the bigger the number after the − sign, the smaller the number!

Two positive numbers multiplied together give a positive number:

For a negative number, the bigger the number after the − sign, the smaller the number!

• −5 is smaller than −4 (as 5 is bigger than 4).

• −4 is smaller than −3 (as 4 is bigger than 3).

• −3 is smaller than −2 (as 3 is bigger than 2).

• −2 is smaller than −1 (as 2 is bigger than 1).