tern-aries

ternary

[tur-nuh-ree]
adjective
1.
consisting of or involving three; threefold; triple.
2.
third in order or rank.
3.
based on the number three.
4.
Chemistry.
a.
consisting of three different elements or groups.
b.
(formerly) consisting of three atoms.
5.
Mathematics. having three variables.
6.
Metallurgy. (of an alloy) having three principal constituents.
noun, plural ternaries.
7.
a group of three.

Origin:
1400–50; late Middle English < Latin ternārius made up of three. See tern2, -ary

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World English Dictionary
ternary (ˈtɜːnərɪ)
 
adj
1.  consisting of three or groups of three
2.  maths
 a.  (of a number system) to the base three
 b.  involving or containing three variables
3.  (of an alloy, mixture, or chemical compound) having three different components or composed of three different elements
 
n , -ries
4.  a group of three
 
[C14: from Latin ternārius, from ternī three each]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

ternary ter·na·ry (tûr'nə-rē)
adj.
Composed of three or arranged in threes, as a chemical compound containing three elements. n.
A group of three.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
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