amalgam

noun
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

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 Her runway show this month integrated the vivacious color and dazzling patterns the label has become known for — a psychedelic amalgam of soft florals layered on stripes, checks or more florals. Kim Bhasin, The Seattle Times, "Michael Kors $2 billion bet on Versace may be too bold," 25 Sep. 2018 And Homer's pink sedan is clearly drawn to be an amalgam of the boring family cars that occupied American driveways throughout the 80s and 90s—a design that hints at the familiar without identifying itself as any one specific vehicle. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "We Finally Know What Car Homer Simpson Drives," 12 Jan. 2017 Cancer, being a unique amalgam of self and non-self, exploits this checkpoint system, pretending to be part of the body to escape the notice of the immune system. Jacqueline Detwiler, Popular Mechanics, "The Cancer Breakthrough That Just Won the Nobel Prize, Explained," 1 Oct. 2018 Outside there’s a sidewalk patio – an amalgam of concrete and grass – with circular fire features that are sure to be a hit with the al fresco crowd. James Patrick Kelly, idahostatesman, "Downtown Boise’s Txikiteo bolsters the list of locally owned Basque eateries," 30 May 2018 The Department of Homeland Security, which has a budget of more than $40 billion and a staff of more than 240,000, is a sprawling amalgam created in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks that cobbled together 22 government agencies. Elizabeth Williamson, New York Times, "Kirstjen Nielsen Was a Target of Trump’s Immigration Ire. Now She’s His Protector.," 19 June 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

24 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for amalgam

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

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More Definitions for amalgam

amalgam

noun

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

amalgam

noun
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

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