Pronunciation: /dɪˈstrɪ byut/ ?

To distribute is to expand an expression by multiplying through parentheses.[1] Distributing used the distributive property of multiplication over addition and subtraction.


2(x+2)(x-3) = x*(x-3)+2*(x-3) = x*x+x*(-3)+2*x+2*(-3) = x^2-3x+2x-6 = x^2-x-6


  1. distributive property. http://wordnet.princeton.edu/. WordNet. Princeton University. (Accessed: 2011-01-08). http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=distribute&sub=Search+WordNet&o2=&o0=1&o7=&o5=&o1=1&o6=&o4=&o3=&h=.
  2. Chrystal, G.. Introduction to Algebra, 3rd edition, pg 39. Adam and Charles Black, 1902. (Accessed: 2010-01-23). http://www.archive.org/stream/introductiontoal00chryuoft#page/39/mode/1up/search/distribute.
  3. Aley, Robert J. and Rothrock, David A.. The Essentials of Algebra, pp 45-47. Silver, Burdet and Company, 1904. (Accessed: 2010-01-23). http://www.archive.org/stream/cu31924031286143#page/n56/mode/1up.

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Distribute. 2010-01-23. All Math Words Encyclopedia. Life is a Story Problem LLC. http://www.allmathwords.org/en/d/distribute.html.


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Revision History

2010-01-23: Added "References", expanded description to include distributive property of multiplication (McAdams, David.)
2008-12-13: Initial version (McAdams, David.)

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