Definition for zero

noun as in nothing


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Example Sentences

The hospital effectively ended the legal proceedings by filing thousands of notices with Shelby County General Sessions Court stating that the defendants’ balances were now zero.

“What I’m focused on is ensuring we’re picking the right areas of enterprise to focus on,” she said, citing training, remote assist, and 3D visualization as the three primary use cases the company is zeroing in on.

From Fortune

The plaintiffs in Texas, which include 18 states with Republican governors or attorneys general, claim this zeroed-out mandate is unconstitutional.

From Vox

You’ve got to connect with those people who are at ground zero and know what they’re saying is really happening.

From Fortune

“The industry dynamics have changed,” said Antonios Drossos, a Finland-based telecoms consultant whose firm Rewheel has analyzed EU zero-rating offers over recent years.

From Fortune

Not quite, but at one point the temperature registered 29 below zero, with 21 inches of snow.

The longer someone stays well, the lower their chance of relapsing, although that possibility never becomes zero.

Is it True that “Gays vs. Traditionalists are a Zero-Sum Game”?

Islamic State brought “peace, autonomy, zero corruption, low crime-rate,” he Tweeted last month.

During the recession net immigration to the U.S. from Mexico fell to zero or less.

But the day he planned to start was very cold—the mercury stood twenty-seven below zero.

Of course, at roulette, some number or zero itself is bound to come up every time, but number twenty-seven was invariably unlucky.

The words whispered in the pastry-cook's ear cooled his hot fit of courage down to zero.

At last, one evening, he walked up to a table and said to the croupier, "When was zero up last?"

One day last week, when the mercury was sulking at zero, three lambs arrived on the place.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is another word for zero?

In math and more generally, something that has the value of zero can be described as null, as in null set and The value is null. 

The word cipher was once used as another name for zero.

Sometimes, the term goose egg is used as an informal way to refer to zero, especially in the context of a score, as in I scored a big ol’ goose egg on that round.

Zero is commonly used in a general way to mean none or nothing. Synonyms for this sense of the word include nil, naught, nought, and aught.

Sometimes the word no can be used to mean the same thing as zero, as in We lowered the price but we had no offers—and I mean zero offers. 

More informal synonyms for zero in the sense of nothing include zip, zippo, zilch, nada (the Spanish word for “nothing”), diddly, and diddly-squat.

The word zero can also be used as a verb meaning “to reduce to zero.” The verb phrase zero out is more commonly used, as in Zero out these totals. 

Sometimes, the word zero is used to refer to a person considered completely insignificant, as in They went from zeroes to heroes. Similar words include nobody and loser, but calling someone (or yourself) any of these names is never a nice thing to say.

Where does zero come from?

The concept of zero is ancient, with recorded use dating back to ancient Mesopotamia. The word zero has been used in English since at least the 16th century. It comes from Italian, from the Medieval Latin word ​​zephirum, from the Arabic sifr, meaning “empty” or “zero.” The word cipher comes from this same Arabic root, which is a translation of the Sanskrit word śūnyā, meaning “empty.”

How do you use zero in a sentence?

Zero can be used as a noun, an adjective, and even a verb.

Here are some examples of zero in a sentence:

  • Four minus four is zero. 
  • The temperature is expected to drop below zero.
  • If we don’t play, the chance of us winning is zero.
  • The school had a zero tolerance policy on bullying.
  • Please zero these columns by removing all the values.

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On this page you'll find 65 synonyms, antonyms, and words related to zero, such as: nil, aught, blank, bottom, cipher, and nada.

From Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.