col·​li·​sion | \ kə-ˈli-zhən \

Definition of collision

1 : an act or instance of colliding : clash
2 : an encounter between particles (such as atoms or molecules) resulting in exchange or transformation of energy

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Other Words from collision

collisional \ kə-​ˈlizh-​nəl , -​ˈli-​zhə-​nᵊl \ adjective
collisionally adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for collision

impact, collision, shock, concussion mean a forceful, even violent contact between two or more things. impact may be used to imply contact between two things, at least one of which is impelled toward the other. the glass shattered on impact with the floor collision implies the coming together of two or more things with such force that both or all are damaged or their progress is severely impeded. the collision damaged the vehicle shock often denotes the effect produced by a collision and carries the suggestion of something that strikes or hits with force. the shock of falling rocks concussion when not in technical use, often suggests the shattering, disrupting, or weakening effects of a collision, explosion, or blow. bystanders felt the concussion of the blast

Examples of collision in a Sentence

The car was destroyed in the collision. the collision of two opposing philosophies regarding the rearing of children

Recent Examples on the Web

The administration has held up proposals to require electronic speed-capping software in new heavy trucks and require auto makers to equip future cars and light trucks with vehicle-to-vehicle communications to prevent collisions. David Koenig, The Seattle Times, "Safety board highlights need for transportation improvements," 4 Feb. 2019 Ships send wireless signals, called automatic identification systems, to help avoid collision and allow rescuers to locate distressed ships. Benoit Faucon, WSJ, "Satellites, Big Data Help U.S. Spy on Smugglers of Iranian Oil," 1 Nov. 2018 The driver of the tow truck, Donald Reyes, 22, of Valparaiso, tried to avoid a collision and swerved to the left but was unsuccessful and was struck by the pickup truck, Erow said. Amy Lavalley, Post-Tribune, "Four injured in two Porter County crashes," 11 May 2018 Diaz drove in a run with an infield single to first baseman Brad Miller and hit the side of the base while trying to avoid a collision with pitcher Chris Archer, who was covering. Dick Scanlon,, "Blue Jays beat Rays 2-1 on wild pitch in 9th," 6 May 2018 After driving through the intersection, the motorcycle drove left of center and hit a 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee, whose driver attempted to turn right and avoid the collision, the sheriff's office said. Hasan Dudar, Detroit Free Press, "Pontiac motorcyclist dies in crash after fleeing police in pursuit," 24 Apr. 2018 Cropper, a Gervais resident, swerved his white Volvo tractor trailer to avoid a collision and sideswiped a red Freightliner driven by 29-year-old Victor Amaro of California, Shephard said said. Shane Dixon Kavanaugh,, "Wrong-way driver, suspected of drinking, plows head-on into semi-truck on I-5, police say," 30 Mar. 2018 Her son Brandon Mendoza, a Mesa, Ariz., police officer, was killed in 2014 in a head-on collision with a car driven by an intoxicated undocumented immigrant. New York Times, "For Trump and ‘Angel Families,’ a Mutually Beneficial Bond," 4 July 2018 Even as one head-on collision between the president and his Justice Department appeared to have eased, another loomed over Republican demands for confidential records about the Russia investigation. Chris Megerian,, "Trump meets with Justice Department leaders, and latest clash over Russia investigation eases — for now," 21 May 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for collision

Middle English, from Latin collision-, collisio, from collidere

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Statistics for collision

Last Updated

10 Feb 2019

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Time Traveler for collision

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

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More Definitions for collision



English Language Learners Definition of collision

: a crash in which two or more things or people hit each other
: a situation in which people or groups disagree : a clash or conflict


col·​li·​sion | \ kə-ˈli-zhən \

Kids Definition of collision

: an act or instance of colliding

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Comments on collision

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


to express emotion in a dramatic way

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