Basic problems are often written as:

--      <-- Is there a name for this?

  • 1
    All things considered, most things don't have names. For example, is there a name for the choice of using a column to indicate addition instead of a row (3 + -2 = 1)? Also, there are many things that we are familiar with that have names, but we (i.e., most people) don't know. For example, do you know the name of the bone from your elbow to your wrist? Neither do I. Commented Feb 15, 2012 at 12:16
  • 3
    I know this is not the point, but there are two bones in the forearm, and they are called the radius and the ulna. Doesn't every schoolchild learn that in basic biology?
    – nohat
    Commented Feb 16, 2012 at 5:51
  • The line, and it's the same as the equals sign =
    – Lambie
    Commented Feb 23, 2017 at 21:33

3 Answers 3


An underline. See “Addition: Notation and terminology” at Wikipedia.

  • Although I believe it to be a technicality, as it appears that the answer is that there is no given name specific to this item, given the specific wikipedia reference that only uses the word underline, I am going to mark this as the answer.
    – user14070
    Commented Feb 16, 2012 at 14:27

You may use vinculum or horizontal line in mathematical notation. Please check Mathforum and Wikipedia.

  • 2
    Vinculum appears to be only for division and repeat grouping notation, but thank you for teaching me a new word.
    – user14070
    Commented Feb 14, 2012 at 17:30

I think "the equals line" would be understood if that's all you need (and if you can't come up with something better).

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