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particle Syllabification: par·ti·cle
Pronunciation: /ˈpärdək(ə)l/

Definition of particle in English:


1A minute portion of matter: tiny particles of dust
More example sentences
  • Uncatchables were like magnets for loose electrons, and whenever they became solid, it was because they had attracted all of the minute particles of matter in the area towards them.
  • It is true that Newton did suggest that if we could know the forces that operate on the minute particles of matter, we could understand why macroscopic processes occur in the ways they do.
  • Cloud seeding is a snowmaking technique that discharges minute particles of a chemical called iodide into winter storm clouds to create snow.
(tiny) bit, (tiny) piece, speck, spot, fleck;
fragment, sliver, splinter
1.2 Physics Another term for elementary particle.
Example sentences
  • Counting photons, particles that carry electromagnetic energy including X-rays, was critical to this discovery.
  • Electrical power can be related to the Planck constant, defined as the ratio between the frequency of an electromagnetic particle such as a photon of light and its energy.
  • In addition, they must consider the electrons not as particles, but as quantum mechanical waves.
1.3 Physics another term for subatomic particle.
1.4 Mathematics A hypothetical object having mass but no physical size.
Example sentences
  • At that time he made the claim, for the first time, that the particle had zero mass.
  • The view which I am so bold to put forth considers radiation as a high species of vibration in the lines of force which are known to connect particles, and also masses of matter together.
  • A mechanism which gives mass to the particles by allowing them to interact with a field was first suggested by Peter Higgs.
2 Grammar A minor function word that has comparatively little meaning and does not inflect, in particular.
Example sentences
  • Since it's not credible that he was having trouble remembering his own last name, I concluded that he often used a filled pause as a sort of emphatic particle.
  • The story about Irish lacking particles meaning ‘yes’ and ‘no’ is true, by the way.
2.1(In English) any of the class of words such as in, up, off, over, used with verbs to make phrasal verbs.
Example sentences
  • If no special emphasis is employed, the adverbial particle in a phrasal verb proper is stressed: to píck úp a bóok/píck a bóok úp.
  • Maybe, as a result of this, sentences occasionally miss main verbs or particles get mislaid, but blogging is Hell, soldier.
  • The third shared feature is that where there is more than one particle accompanying a verb, the particles always have a fixed order before the verb: tense-mood-aspect.
2.2(In ancient Greek) any of the class of words such as de and ge, used for contrast and emphasis.
Example sentences
  • These are considered particles and they're placed at the end of a sentence, usually to signify a certain attitudinal meaning or intonation.
  • Such a particle would generally be included in a grammar in a post-compositional pragmatic component, but, surprisingly, like also affects basic semantic attributes.


Late Middle English: from Latin particula 'little part', diminutive of pars, part-.

Words that rhyme with particle

article, nanoparticle

Definition of particle in:

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