Meaning of fundamental

fun•da•men•tal

Pronunciation: (fun"du-men'tl), [key]
— adj.
  1. serving as, or being an essential part of, a foundation or basis; basic; underlying: fundamental principles; the fundamental structure.
  2. of, pertaining to, or affecting the foundation or basis: a fundamental revision.
  3. being an original or primary source: a fundamental idea.
  4. (of a chord) having its root as its lowest note.
—n.
  1. a basic principle, rule, law, or the like, that serves as the groundwork of a system; essential part: to master the fundamentals of a trade.
  2. Also called
    1. the root of a chord.
    2. the generator of a series of harmonics.
  3. the component of lowest frequency in a composite wave.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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