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Valence (n.) The degree of combining power of an atom (or radical) as shown by the number of atoms of hydrogen (or of other monads, as chlorine, sodium, etc.) with which it will combine, or for which it can be substituted, or with which it can be compared; thus, an atom of hydrogen is a monad, and has a valence of one; the atoms of oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon are respectively dyads, triads, and tetrads, and have a valence respectively of two, three, and four.