1. A numerical piece of information.
2. A calculated numerical value (such as the sample mean) that characterizes some aspect of a sample set of data, and that is often meant to estimate the true value of a corresponding parameter (such as the population mean) in an underlying population.
3. One viewed solely as a piece of statistical or numerical information: got laid off and became another statistic in the slumping economy.
[Ultimately from New Latin statisticus, of statecraft; see STATISTICS.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 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.