Reflexive Property of Equality

Pronunciation: /rɪˈflɛk sɪv ˈprɒp ər ti ʌv ɪˈkwɒl ɪ ti/ ?

The reflexive property of equality for real numbers states that a = a.

Think of a mirror. When you look in a reflection in a mirror, everything on your right hand looks like it is on the left hand of the reflection. This is a good way to remember the reflexive property.

  • Start with a.
  • The equal sign is like a mirror. We will use it to reflect the a.
  • Since the a is reflected across the equals, a = a. This is the reflexive property of equality.

Mnemonic What is a mnemonic?


Picture of a mirror reflecting a = b as b = a.
Figure 1: a reflected as a = a.


  1. Gilbert, Jimmie; and Gilbert Linda. Elements of Modern Algebra, 6th edition, pp 49-50. Thomson, Brooks/Cole, 2005.

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Reflexive Property of Equality. 2008-10-05. All Math Words Encyclopedia. Life is a Story Problem LLC.


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2008-10-05: Initial version (McAdams, David.)

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