In set theory, a singleton set is a set with just one element.

The term is not in any of my dictionaries, and the only online source I found is one page of zh.wikipedia which just transliterates it as 辛格尔顿. A search on line shows this is hardly ever used.

A friend who is not a set theorist suggests 单元 for singleton. I wonder what Chinese set theorists usually use.

  • How about 单元素集(合)?
    – user4072
    Apr 24, 2017 at 13:34
  • @songyuanyao Both Baidu and my friend go with 单元集合, but Zh.wikipedia does not. Can you recommend some set theory book in Chinese on line to look at? Apr 24, 2017 at 16:45
  • You won't find the technical term in any normal dictionaries. You might need to check the corresponding textbook in Chinese version(normally will be a university textbook if it comes to set theory). Or try to look it up in special dictionaries which focus in the specific area.
    – Kevman
    Apr 25, 2017 at 0:36
  • A tactic I commonly use is to find the term on Wikipedia, and then look for the Chinese-language version. Not infallible, but often a good start. In this case, it yields 單元素集合.
    – Brian Tung
    Jul 18, 2020 at 1:34

1 Answer 1


单元素集合 is the correct and exact word for singleton set in Chinese, confirmed by a Chinese friend of my who is a mathematician.

There is a Baidu encyclopaedia entry for 单元素集合, where it is defined as "由唯一一个元素组成的集合", i.e. a set containing a single element, followed by an example {0}.

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