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per capita

[per kap-i-tuh] /pər ˈkæp ɪ tə/
by or for each individual person:
income per capita.
Law. noting or pertaining to a method of dividing an estate by which all those equally related to the decedent take equal shares individually without regard to the number of lines of descent.
Compare per stirpes.
Origin of per capita
1675-85; < Latin: literally, by heads
Can be confused
per annum, per capita, per diem. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for per capita
  • New readers are, per capita, less profitable than the old ones.
  • It is a fact that the number of scooters per capita is higher.
  • On a per capita basis, people have been driving less for almost a decade.
  • Many poorer neighborhoods have fewer supermarkets and more fast-food franchises per capita.
  • The disclaimer here is that a high number of patents per capita is not the perfect proxy for start-up development.
  • The second map charts the change in productivity measured as gross state product per capita.
  • In contrast, he says a wealthy city can a have a high-consumption lifestyle but low per capita production emissions.
  • The rankings are based on energy use per capita, renewable power investments, efficiency efforts and conservation incentives.
  • He chose this store because it reportedly sells, per capita, more of his books then anywhere else in the country.
  • Growth in per capita gdp is one way of saying reducing poverty.
British Dictionary definitions for per capita

per capita

/pə ˈkæpɪtə/
adjective, adverb
of or for each person
Word Origin
Latin, literally: according to heads
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for per capita

Latin, literally "by the head," from per (see per) + capita "head" (see capital).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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per capita in Culture
per capita [(puhr kap-i-tuh)]

A Latin phrase literally meaning “by heads,” and translated as “for each person.” It is a common unit for expressing data in statistics. A country's per capita personal income, for example, is the average personal income per person.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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