Definition: Two angles that add up to 180°
Try this Drag an orange dot. The two angles will change so that they always add to 180°
In the figure above, the two angles ∠PQR and
∠JKL are supplementary because they always add to 180°
Often the two angles are
adjacent, in which case they form a
linear pair like this:
Similar in concept are complementary angles, which add up to 90°.
A way to remember
Sometimes it's hard to remember which is which between supplementary (adds to 180°) and complementary (adds to 90°). Here are two memory aids:
- The phrase "it's right to give compliments" A right angle is 90 degrees and, yes, 'compliment' and 'complement' are not the same word, but it's a way to remember which is which.
Put a vertical line on the right of the letter 'c' in 'complementary' to make into a '9'. Complementary angles add to 90.
Other angle topics
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