Definitions for: Problem


[n] a source of difficulty; "one trouble after another delayed the job"; "what's the problem?"
[n] a question raised for consideration or solution; "our homework consisted of ten problems to solve"
[n] a state of difficulty that needs to be resolved; "she and her husband are having problems"; "it is always a job to contact him"; "urban problems such as traffic congestion and smog"



Webster (1913) Definition: Prob"lem, n. [F. probl[`e]me, L. problema, fr. Gr. ?
anything thrown forward, a question proposed for solution,
fr. ? to throw or lay before; ? before, forward + ? to throw.
Cf. Parable. ]
1. A question proposed for solution; a matter stated for
examination or proof; hence, a matter difficult of
solution or settlement; a doubtful case; a question
involving doubt. --Bacon.

2. (Math.) Anything which is required to be done; as, in
geometry, to bisect a line, to draw a perpendicular; or,
in algebra, to find an unknown quantity.

Note: Problem differs from theorem in this, that a problem is
something to be done, as to bisect a triangle, to
describe a circle, etc.; a theorem is something to be
proved, as that all the angles of a triangle are equal
to two right angles.

Plane problem (Geom.), a problem that can be solved by the
use of the rule and compass.

Solid problem (Geom.), a problem requiring in its geometric
solution the use of a conic section or higher curve.

Synonyms: job, trouble

See Also: acrostic, balance-of-payments problem, brain-teaser, can of worms, case, conundrum, crossword, crossword puzzle, deep water, difficulty, difficulty, enigma, Gordian knot, growing pains, head, homework problem, matter, mystifier, pons asinorum, poser, puzzle, puzzler, question, race problem, rebus, riddle, sticker, stumper, teaser, toughie, word square

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