Ge`o*met"ric (?), Ge`o*met"ric*al (?), a. [L. geometricus; Gr. : cf. F. g'eom'etrique.]

Pertaining to, or according to the rules or principles of, geometry; determined by geometry; as, a geometrical solution of a problem.

Geometric is often used, as opposed to algebraic, to include processes or solutions in which the propositions or principles of geometry are made use of rather than those of algebra.

Geometrical is often used in a limited or strictly technical sense, as opposed to mechanical; thus, a construction or solution is geometrical which can be made by ruler and compasses, i. e., by means of right lines and circles. Every construction or solution which requires any other curve, or such motion of a line or circle as would generate any other curve, is not geometrical, but mechanical. By another distinction, a geometrical solution is one obtained by the rules of geometry, or processes of analysis, and hence is exact; while a mechanical solution is one obtained by trial, by actual measurements, with instruments, etc., and is only approximate and empirical.

Geometrical curve. Same as Algebraic curve; -- so called because their different points may be constructed by the operations of elementary geometry. -- Geometric lathe, an instrument for engraving bank notes, etc., with complicated patterns of interlacing lines; -- called also cycloidal engine. -- Geometrical pace, a measure of five feet. -- Geometric pen, an instrument for drawing geometric curves, in which the movements of a pen or pencil attached to a revolving arm of ajustable length may be indefinitely varied by changing the toothed wheels which give motion to the arm. -- Geometrical plane Persp., the same as Ground plane . -- Geometrical progression, proportion, ratio. See under Progression, Proportion and Ratio. -- Geometrical radius, in gearing, the radius of the pitch circle of a cogwheel. Knight. -- Geometric spider Zool., one of many species of spiders, which spin a geometrical web. They mostly belong to Epeira and allied genera, as the garden spider. See Garden spider. -- Geometric square, a portable instrument in the form of a square frame for ascertaining distances and heights by measuring angles. -- Geometrical staircase, one in which the stairs are supported by the wall at one end only. -- Geometrical tracery, in architecture and decoration, tracery arranged in geometrical figures.


© Webster 1913.

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