# In equations, what single term represents =, >, <, >=, <=, or !=?

I've been doing research to find the terminology of equations, but I can't find a single term for the possible symbols that can go between the left-hand side and the right-hand side of an equation. On the other hand, I have found partial terms:

• Equality for `=`
• Inequality for `<` and `>` and `>=` and `<=`
• Inequation for `!=`

But is there one umbrella term for all three? The Wikipedia articles for these terms imply it might be called "Relation?" Is that correct?

Example sentence: "The ??? sits between the left-hand side and right hand side of an equation."

For context, I'm a programmer and I need to store one of these symbols in a variable, but I don't know what name to give it.

• Would operator fit your purpose? Commented Oct 11, 2022 at 1:09
• @JimMack As far as I understand it, it doesn't. Operators are symbols within the left-hand side and within the right hand side of an equation, but they don't sit between the left-hand side in the right hand side. if I'm wrong about this, I don't think it's a good fit for another reason: addition, multiplication, etc. are operators, and I'm looking for something more specific. Commented Oct 11, 2022 at 1:13
• What you refer to as an "inequation" (!= or "bang equals") is a programming symbol not a mathematical one because the bang is a general negation symbol in many programming languages (for example !bnvar where bnvar is a boolean). In mathematics two inequalities (<>) or a struck-through equals sign (which I don't have on this device) mean "is different from" or " is not equal to". Commented Oct 11, 2022 at 7:44

The term I normally see for this is "relational operator". Either of these terms might be interpreted a bit more broadly; for example, Python programmers will also include the `in` operator here (which tests set membership, as well as substring search) and the `is` operator (which tests object identity). (The Python documentation calls these "comparisons", FWIW.