Definition of valency noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈveɪlənsi//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈveɪlənsi//
    [countable, uncountable] (pl. valencies) (also valence
    BrE BrE//ˈveɪləns//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈveɪləns//
    especially in North American English
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  1. 1 (chemistry) a measurement of the power of an atom to combine with others, by the number of hydrogen atoms it can combine with or displace Carbon has a valency of 4. Wordfinderantiparticle, atom, electron, ion, neutron, nucleus, particle, positron, proton, valency Wordfinderacid, catalyst, chemistry, compound, formula, molecule, pH, react, solution, valency
  2. 2 (linguistics) the number of grammatical elements that a word, especially a verb, combines with in a sentence
  3. Word Originearly 17th cent.: from late Latin valentia ‘power, competence’, from valere ‘be well or strong’.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: valency