Divisible ▪ Sale
Calculation results
Subtraction (−)
minuendsubtrahend = difference
Multiplication (×)
multiplicand × multiplier = product
Division (÷)
dividend ÷ divisor = quotient
Exponentiation
base = power
nth root (√)
Logarithm
logbase(power) = exponent
The divisors of 10 illustrated with Cuisenaire rods: 1, 2, 5, and 10

In mathematics, a divisor of an integer $n$, also called a factor of $n$, is an integer which divides $n$ without leaving a remainder.

## Terminology

The name "divisor" comes from the arithmetic operation of division: if $\frac{a}{b} = c$ then $a$ is the dividend, $b$ the divisor, and $c$ the quotient.

In general, for non-zero integers $m$ and $n$, it is said that $m$ divides $n$-and, dually, that $n$ is divisible by $m$-written:

$m \mid n,$

if there exists an integer $k$ such that $n = km$. Thus, divisors can be negative as well as positive, although sometimes the term is restricted to positive divisors. (For example, there are six divisors of four, 1, 2, 4, −1, −2, −4, but only the positive ones would usually be mentioned, i.e. 1, 2, and 4.)

1 and −1 divide (are divisors of) every integer, every integer (and its negation) is a divisor of itself, and every integer is a divisor of 0, except by convention 0 itself (see also division by zero). Numbers divisible by 2 are called even and numbers not divisible by 2 are called odd.

1, −1, n and −n are known as the trivial divisors of n. A divisor of n that is not a trivial divisor is known as a non-trivial divisor. A number with at least one non-trivial divisor is known as a composite number, while the units −1 and 1 and prime numbers have no non-trivial divisors.

There are divisibility rules which allow one to recognize certain divisors of a number from the number's digits.

The generalization can be said to be the concept of divisibility in any integral domain.

## Examples

• 7 is a divisor of 42 because $42/7 = 6$, so we can say $7 \mid 42$. It can also be said that 42 is divisible by 7, 42 is a multiple of 7, 7 divides 42, or 7 is a factor of 42.
• The non-trivial divisors of 6 are 2, −2, 3, −3.
• The positive divisors of 42 are 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 14, 21, 42.
• The set of all positive divisors of 60, $A = \{ 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 12, 15, 20, 30, 60 \}$, partially ordered by divisibility, has the Hasse diagram:

## Further notions and facts

There are some elementary rules:

• If $a \mid b$ and $b \mid c$, then $a \mid c$. This is the transitive relation.
• If $a \mid b$ and $b \mid a$, then $a = b$ or $a = -b$.
• If $a \mid b$ and $c \mid b$, then it is NOT always true that $(a + c) \mid b$ (e.g. $2\mid6$ and $3 \mid 6$ but 5 does not divide 6). However, when $a \mid b$ and $a \mid c$, then $a \mid (b + c)$ is true, as is $a \mid (b - c)$.

If $a \mid bc$, and gcd$(a, b) = 1$, then $a \mid c$. This is called Euclid's lemma.

If $p$ is a prime number and $p \mid ab$ then $p \mid a$ or $p \mid b$.

A positive divisor of $n$ which is different from $n$ is called a proper divisor or an aliquot part of $n$. A number that does not evenly divide $n$ but leaves a remainder is called an aliquant part of $n$.

An integer $n > 1$ whose only proper divisor is 1 is called a prime number. Equivalently, a prime number is a positive integer which has exactly two positive factors: 1 and itself.

Any positive divisor of $n$ is a product of prime divisors of $n$ raised to some power. This is a consequence of the fundamental theorem of arithmetic.

A number $n$ is said to be perfect if it equals the sum of its proper divisors, deficient if the sum of its proper divisors is less than $n$, and abundant if this sum exceeds $n$.

The total number of positive divisors of $n$ is a multiplicative function $d(n)$, meaning that when two numbers $m$ and $n$ are relatively prime, then $d(mn)=d(m)\times d(n)$. For instance, $d(42) = 8 = 2 \times 2 \times 2 = d(2) \times d(3) \times d(7)$; the eight divisors of 42 are 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 14, 21 and 42. However the number of positive divisors is not a totally multiplicative function: if the two numbers $m$ and $n$ share a common divisor, then it might not be true that $d(mn)=d(m)\times d(n)$. The sum of the positive divisors of $n$ is another multiplicative function $\sigma (n)$ (e.g. $\sigma (42) = 96 = 3 \times 4 \times 8 = \sigma (2) \times \sigma (3) \times \sigma (7) = 1+2+3+6+7+14+21+42$). Both of these functions are examples of divisor functions.

If the prime factorization of $n$ is given by

$n = p_1^{\nu_1} \, p_2^{\nu_2} \cdots p_k^{\nu_k}$

then the number of positive divisors of $n$ is

$d(n) = (\nu_1 + 1) (\nu_2 + 1) \cdots (\nu_k + 1),$

and each of the divisors has the form

$p_1^{\mu_1} \, p_2^{\mu_2} \cdots p_k^{\mu_k}$

where $0 \le \mu_i \le \nu_i$ for each $1 \le i \le k.$

For every natural $n$, $d(n) < 2 \sqrt{n}$.

Also,

$d(1)+d(2)+ \cdots +d(n) = n \ln n + (2 \gamma -1) n + O(\sqrt{n}).$

where $\gamma$ is Euler–Mascheroni constant. One interpretation of this result is that a randomly chosen positive integer n has an expected number of divisors of about $\ln n$.

## In abstract algebra

The relation of divisibility turns the set $N$ of non-negative integers into a partially ordered set, in fact into a complete distributive lattice. The largest element of this lattice is 0 and the smallest is 1. The meet operation ^ is given by the greatest common divisor and the join operation v by the least common multiple. This lattice is isomorphic to the dual of the lattice of subgroups of the infinite cyclic group $Z$.

## Notes

1. Durbin, John R. (1992). Modern Algebra : an Introduction (3rd ed. ed.). New York: Wiley. p. 61. ISBN  - get this book. "An integer $m$ is divisible by an integer $n$ if there is an integer $q$ (for quotient) such that $m = n q$."
2. $a \mid b,\, a \mid c \Rightarrow b=ja,\, c=ka \Rightarrow b+c=(j+k)a \Rightarrow a \mid (b+c)$ Similarly, $a \mid b,\, a \mid c \Rightarrow b=ja,\, c=ka \Rightarrow b-c=(j-k)a \Rightarrow a \mid (b-c)$
3. Hardy, G. H.; E. M. Wright (April 17, 1980). An Introduction to the Theory of Numbers. Oxford University Press. p. 264. ISBN  - get this book.

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