Definition of magnetism in English:


Line breaks: mag¦net|ism
Pronunciation: /ˈmagnɪtɪz(ə)m


[mass noun]
  • 1A physical phenomenon produced by the motion of electric charge, which results in attractive and repulsive forces between objects.
    More example sentences
    • Relativity would arrive, not from concerns over the flaws in Newton's mechanics, but rather from contemplating the forces of electricity and magnetism as well as the mysteries of light.
    • Maxwell's theory of electromagnetism, for example, united the previously disjointed phenomena of electricity and magnetism.
    • In 1820 the Danish physicist H C Orsted produced experimental results on electricity and magnetism.
  • All magnetism is due to circulating electric currents. In magnetic materials the magnetism is produced by electrons orbiting within the atoms; in most substances the magnetic effects of different electrons cancel each other out, but in some, such as iron, a net magnetic field can be induced by aligning the atoms


early 17th century: from modern Latin magnetismus, from Latin magneta (see magnet).

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