amal·​gam | \ ə-ˈmal-gəm How to pronounce amalgam (audio) \

Definition of amalgam

1 : a mixture of different elements an amalgam of musical forms The crowd was an amalgam of young and old.
2 : an alloy of mercury with another metal that is solid or liquid at room temperature according to the proportion of mercury present and is used especially in making tooth cements Dentists have used silver-colored mercury amalgam (mercury mixed, about 50/50, with a combination of silver, tin, copper and other metals) to fill cavities for at least 150 years.— Jennifer Huget

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Examples of amalgam in a Sentence

a church that is an amalgam of traditional and modern architectural styles

Recent Examples on the Web

To bring to life the house known as Straight Gate, the Seattle turn-of-the-century Catholic home for wayward girls stuck in zoning limbo, which Bernadette takes on as her family home, Curtis utilized an amalgam of three locations in Pittsburgh. Los Angeles Times, "How Richard Linklater’s ‘Where’d You Go, Bernadette’ uses oddball architecture to reflect its heroine," 14 Aug. 2019 Thanks to generations of family recipes, an amalgam of culinary culture, and a genuine passion for cooking and serving neighbors and guests alike, Birmingham has become a food oasis known from coast to coast. Jeremy Burgess, al, "Elite Yelpers help acquaint locals with food scene," 14 Aug. 2019 There is no better example of that than the fact that the amalgam of Western ideas that is the Indian constitution has had to be amended over a hundred times since independence. WSJ, "Modi and India Don’t Need Western Values," 1 June 2019 An amalgam of Islam and Christianity, Sesay’s faith helps ground her in times of crisis. Julia M. Klein,, "A new book goes inside Boko Haram’s abduction of the Chibok schoolgirls," 8 July 2019 But that didn’t prevent Democratic supermajorities in both chamber from passing an unprecedented amalgam of their priorities., "Oregon lawmakers wrap up buzzer-beating 2019 session," 30 June 2019 The superhero and horror genres fit into each other, creating a single monstrous or heroic amalgam. Noah Berlatsky, The Verge, "Since season 1, Jessica Jones has struggled to mix horror with superheroes," 18 June 2019 Protons and neutrons are amalgams — each one a trio of lightweight elementary particles called quarks. Quanta Magazine, "At Multiverse Impasse, a New Theory of Scale," 18 Aug. 2014 The name is an amalgam of the yachts America and Magic, which won the first two editions of the regatta in 1851 and 1870. Aaron Kuriloff, WSJ, "New York Yacht Club Has Sights Set on the America’s Cup," 15 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'amalgam.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of amalgam

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for amalgam

Middle English amalgame, from Middle French, from Medieval Latin amalgama

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Statistics for amalgam

Last Updated

19 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for amalgam

The first known use of amalgam was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of amalgam

formal : a combination or mixture of different things
technical : a mixture of mercury and other metals used for filling holes in teeth


amal·​gam | \ ə-ˈmal-gəm How to pronounce amalgam (audio) \

Medical Definition of amalgam

: an alloy of mercury with another metal that is solid or liquid at room temperature according to the proportion of mercury present and is used especially in making tooth cements

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Comments on amalgam

What made you want to look up amalgam? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


authorized for issue (as a bond)

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