1. Of, pertaining to, or affecting, a part only; not general or universal; not total or entire; as, a partial eclipse of the moon. Partial dissolutions of the earth.
2. Inclined to favor one party in a cause, or one side of a question, more then the other; baised; not indifferent; as, a judge should not be partial. Ye have been partial in the law. (mal. Ii. 9)
3. Having a predelection for; inclined to favor unreasonably; foolishly fond. A partial parent. Not partial to an ostentatious display. (Sir W. Scott)
4. (Science: botany) Pertaining to a subordinate portion; as, a compound umbel is made up of a several partial umbels; a leaflet is often supported by a partial petiole. Partial differentials, Partial differential coefficients, Partial differentiation, etc. (of a function of two or more variables), the differentials, differential coefficients, differentiation etc, of the function, upon the hypothesis that some of the variables are for the time constant.
(Science: mathematics) Partial fractions, the simple tones which in combination form an ordinary tone; the overtones, or harmonics, which, blending with a fundamental tone, cause its special quality of sound, or timbre, or tone colour. See, also, Tone.
Origin: F, fr. LL. Partials, fr. L. Pars, gen. Partis, a part; cf. (for sense 1) F. Partiel. See Part.