atmosphere

noun
at·​mo·​sphere | \ ˈat-mə-ˌsfir How to pronounce atmosphere (audio) \

Definition of atmosphere

1a : the gaseous envelope of a celestial body (such as a planet)
b : the whole mass of air surrounding the earth
2 : the air of a locality the stuffy atmosphere of the waiting room
3 : a surrounding influence or environment an atmosphere of hostility
4 : a unit of pressure equal to the pressure of the air at sea level or approximately 14.7 pounds per square inch (101,325 pascals)
5a : the overall aesthetic effect of a work of art
b : an intriguing or singular tone, effect, or appeal an inn with atmosphere

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Other Words from atmosphere

atmosphered \ -​ˌsfird How to pronounce atmosphered (audio) \ adjective

Examples of atmosphere in a Sentence

Experts have noticed changes in the atmosphere. Meteoroids burn up as they pass through Earth's atmosphere. The planets have different atmospheres. a country inn with lots of atmosphere The food was good but the restaurant has no atmosphere.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Luckily, scientists and engineers are spending a significant amount of time developing new technologies that remove harmful greenhouse gas emissions from the atmosphere. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Trees Don't Absorb Enough Carbon to Stave Off Climate Change, Says Study," 24 Jan. 2019 This includes things like a weakening of the ocean’s ability to soak up CO2 from the atmosphere, global plant growth lowered by warming in the tropics, and a reduction of the amount of carbon bound up in soils. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "The economic impacts of climate change could limit climate change," 19 Dec. 2018 Scientists, investors and philanthropists also are exploring ways to remove carbon dioxide directly from the atmosphere. Fred Krupp, WSJ, "Harness the Market to Manage the Climate," 15 Oct. 2018 Without an extremely rapid, and perhaps unrealistic, global push to zero out fossil fuel emissions and remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, 2 degrees or higher this century looks more likely. Nadja Popovich, The Seattle Times, "Why half a degree of global warming is a big deal," 9 Oct. 2018 The Southern Ocean accounts for half the ocean’s uptake of carbon from the atmosphere and the majority of the heat uptake, despite comprising only 30 percent of the world’s ocean area. Discover Magazine, "The Salt Life," 27 June 2018 Using renewable energy sources that already exist, along with continuing to develop methods of capturing excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere can slow down the warming and precipitation trends, Cook said. Austin Horn, San Antonio Express-News, "Prediction of rising temperatures for San Antonio raises possibility of alternating droughts, heavy rain," 20 June 2018 That's because the currents in the ocean take up heat and carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store it in the interior of the ocean — that acts to slow the pace of climate change. Sarah Cahlan /, NBC News, "Antarctica is melting faster than we knew. Here's what it will take to save it.," 19 June 2018 Saving wetlands, for instance, can actually be more effective at scrubbing emissions from the atmosphere than installing factory filters. Mark Sappenfield, The Christian Science Monitor, "When a healthy environment is good business," 4 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'atmosphere.' 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 atmosphere

1638, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for atmosphere

earlier in Latinate form atmo-sphæra, from Greek atmós "steam, vapor" (probably contracted from aetmós, of uncertain origin) + -o- -o-+ Latin sphaera sphere entry 1

Note: The word atmo-sphæra was apparently introduced by the English clergyman and natural philosopher John Wilkins (1614-72) in The Discovery of a World in the Moone (London, 1638), p. 138: "Proposition 10. That there is an Atmo-sphæra, or an orbe of grosse vaporous aire, immediately encompassing the body of the Moone."

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Statistics for atmosphere

Last Updated

9 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for atmosphere

The first known use of atmosphere was in 1638

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More Definitions for atmosphere

atmosphere

noun

English Language Learners Definition of atmosphere

: the whole mass of air that surrounds the Earth
: a mass of gases that surround a planet or star
: the air in a particular place or area

atmosphere

noun
at·​mo·​sphere | \ ˈat-mə-ˌsfir How to pronounce atmosphere (audio) \

Kids Definition of atmosphere

1 : the whole mass of air that surrounds the earth
2 : the gas surrounding a heavenly body (as a planet) The atmosphere of Mars is made up mostly of carbon dioxide.
3 : the air in a particular place
4 : a surrounding influence or set of conditions an atmosphere of excitement

atmosphere

noun
at·​mo·​sphere | \ ˈat-mə-ˌsfi(ə)r How to pronounce atmosphere (audio) \

Medical Definition of atmosphere

1 : the whole mass of air surrounding the earth
2 : the air of a locality
3 : a unit of pressure equal to the pressure of the air at sea level or to 101,325 pascals or to approximately 14.7 pounds per square inch

Other Words from atmosphere

atmospheric \ ˌat-​mə-​ˈsfi(ə)r-​ik, -​ˈsfer-​ How to pronounce atmospheric (audio) \ adjective

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Comments on atmosphere

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