Meaning of PARTICLE in English


ˈpär]d.ə̇kəl, ˈpȧ], ]tə̇-, -ēk-\ noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English, from Latin particula, diminutive of part-, pars part — more at part

1. archaic

a. : a small part, portion, or division of a whole

b. : a small portion (as a clause or article) of a composition or document


a. : one of the minute subdivisions of matter (as a molecule, atom, electron, alpha particle) — see elementary particle

b. : an ideal body that has finite mass but infinitesimal size


a. : a very small portion of something material : minute quantity : tiny fragment

her face was … beaded with small particles of rain — Thomas Wolfe

each particle of the tape is magnetized to saturation — Sound Recording & Reproduction

particles of sand

b. : a very small part of something having an immaterial nature : the smallest possible portion or amount of something

there is not a particle of truth in any of these statements — M.F.A.Montagu

exertion of every particle of strength she possessed — C.S.Forester

a voice from which every particle of emotion was painfully excluded — Thomas Hardy


a. : a unit of speech serving almost as a loose affix, expressing some general aspect of meaning or some connective or limiting relation, and including the articles, most prepositions and conjunctions, and some interjections and adverbs

b. : an element that resembles a word but that is used only in composition : a derivational affix

un- in unfair and -ward in backward are particles


a. : a small-sized host distributed to a member of the laity in a communion service of the Roman Catholic Church

b. Eastern Church

(1) : a portion taken from a loaf of oblation to be consecrated as the Lamb in a communion service

(2) : one of the small pieces taken from prosphorae but not consecrated in memory of particular living or dead persons

(3) : a small piece broken from the consecrated Lamb given to a member of the laity in a communion service

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.