An exponent, also known as a power, is a mathematical operation that represents repeated multiplication of a number by itself. It is written as a superscript to the right of the base number. The exponent tells you how many times the base number should be multiplied by itself.

For example, in the expression 2^{3}, the base number is 2, and the exponent is 3. This means that 2 should be multiplied by itself three times: 2 × 2 × 2 = 8. So, 2^{3} is equal to 8.

Exponents have various applications in mathematics and science. They are commonly used to express large or small numbers in a concise form, as well as to simplify mathematical equations and describe processes involving exponential growth or decay. Exponents are also fundamental to the concept of logarithms, which are the inverse operation of exponentiation.