Subtraction is the arithmetic operation for finding the difference between two numbers, though it can also be generalized to other mathematical objects such as vectors and matrices. The special names of the numbers in a subtraction expression are, minuend - subtrahend = difference. For example, the expression 7 - 4 = 3 can be read as "seven minus four equals three," "seven take away four leaves three," or "four from seven leaves three."
If the minuend is less than the subtrahend, the difference will be a negative number. For example, 17 - 25 = -8 . This can be read as "Seventeen minus twenty-five equals negative eight."