dis·per·sion (dĭ-spûrzhən, -shən)
a. The act or process of dispersing.
b. The state of being dispersed.
2. Dispersion The Diaspora of the Jews.
3. Statistics The degree of scatter of data, usually about an average value, such as the median.
a. Separation of a complex wave into its component parts according to a given characteristic, such as frequency or wavelength.
b. Separation of visible light into colors by refraction or diffraction.
5. Chemistry See disperse system.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.