What does the word gradient mean?

Usage examples for gradient

  1. The train leapt forward, ran the gauntlet of the guns, which now filled the air with explosions, swung round the curve of the hill, ran down a steep gradient, and dashed into a huge stone which awaited it on the line at a convenient spot. – London to Ladysmith via Pretoria by Winston Spencer Churchill
  2. Length, 2 miles; average gradient, 1 in 8; steepest gradient, 1 in 7 Dashwood Hill. – The Automobilist Abroad by M. F. (Milburg Francisco) Mansfield