nounEtymology: Late Latin recursion-, recursio, from recurrereDate: 1616 1.return 1 2. the determination of a succession of elements (as numbers or functions) by operation on one or more preceding elements according to a rule or formula involving a finite number of steps 3. a computer programming technique involving the use of a procedure, subroutine, function, or algorithm that calls itself one or more times until a specified condition is met at which time the rest of each repetition is processed from the last one called to the first — compare iteration

n. 1 the act or an instance of returning. 2 Math. the repeated application of a procedure or definition to a previous result to obtain a series of values. Phrases and idioms: recursion formula Math. an expression giving successive terms of a series etc. Derivatives: recursive adj. Etymology: LL recursio (as RECUR)