(Mathematics) A line which approaches nearer to some curve than assignable distance, but, though infinitely extended, would never meet it. Asymptotes may be straight lines or curves. A rectilinear asymptote may be conceived as a tangent to the curve at an infinite distance.
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From Apollonius Pergaeus's Ancient Greek term ἀσύμπτωτος (asúmptōtos, “not falling together”), from ἀ (a, “not”) + σύν (sun, “together”) + πτωτός (ptōtos, “fallen”).
asymptote (plural asymptotes) (analysis) A straight line which a curve approaches arbitrarily closely, as they go to infinity. The limit of the curve, its tangent "at infinity". (by extension, figuratively) Anything which comes near to but never meets something else. 1860: Frederic William Farrar, An Essay on the Origin of Language, page 117 Language, in relation to thought, must ever be regarded as an asymptote.
asymptote (third-person singular simple present asymptotes, present participle asymptoting, simple past and past participle asymptoted) (analysis) To approach, but never quite touch, a straight line, as something goes to infinity. 2006: Neil deGrasse Tyson, The Perimeter of Ignorance As you become more scientific, yes, the religiosity drops off, but it asymptotes.
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