Meaning of DATUM in English


ˈdā]d.əm, ˈda], ˈdä], ˈdȧ], ]təm noun

( plural da·ta ]d.ə, ]tə\ ; see sense 2 )

Etymology: Latin, something given, from neuter of datus, past participle of dare to give — more at date


a. : something that is given either from being experientially encountered or from being admitted or assumed for specific purposes : a fact or principle granted or presented : something upon which an inference or an argument is based or from which an intellectual system of any sort is constructed

a datum of experience

given this datum it follows that

specifically : sense-datum


(1) data plural but often singular in construction : material serving as a basis for discussion, inference, or determination of policy

no general appraisal can be hazarded … until more data is available — Publishers' Weekly

(2) : detailed information of any kind


a. plural usually datums : a point, line, or surface with reference to which positions (as elevations) are measured or indicated (as a permanent bench mark in leveling or mean sea level in a topographical survey) ; specifically : the mean low-water mark of all tides assumed as a basis of reckoning but not admitting rigorous scientific determination

b. plural often datums : a magnitude, figure, or relation supposed to be given, drawn, or known in a mathematical investigation from which other magnitudes, figures, or relations are to be deduced

3. : date

4. : the sensory basis of a perception or judgment — see sense-datum

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.