1

crystal

noun crys·tal \ ˈkri-stᵊl \
Updated on: 12 Apr 2018

Definition of crystal

1 : quartz that is transparent or nearly so and that is either colorless or only slightly tinged
2 : something resembling crystal in transparency and colorlessness
3 : a body that is formed by the solidification of a chemical element, a compound, or a mixture and has a regularly repeating internal arrangement of its atoms and often external plane faces
4 : a clear colorless glass of superior quality; also : objects or ware of such glass
5 : the glass or transparent plastic cover over a watch or clock dial
6 : a crystalline material used in electronics as a frequency-determining element or for rectification
7 : crystal meth; broadly : methamphetamine in any form when used illicitly

Examples of crystal in a Sentence

  1. the crystal structure of minerals

  2. a necklace made of crystal

  3. Some of the crystals used in the necklace are a pale pink color.

  4. The wine glasses are made of the finest crystal.

  5. She inherited her mother's crystal.

Recent Examples of crystal from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of crystal

Middle English cristal "transparent quartz, object made from it," borrowed from Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin crystallum, crystallus, crustallum "clear ice, rock crystal," borrowed from Greek krýstallos, probably borrowed from a pre-Greek substratum; replacing Old English cristalla, cristal, cristallum, borrowed from Latin crystallum
Note: Greek krýstallos was traditionally linked etymologically with krýos "icy cold, frost" and Latin crusta "hard surface layer," though the morphological details were not explicable (and crusta does not refer to ice or cold). More likely, as asserted by Robert Beekes (Etymological Dictionary of Greek [Leiden: Brill, 2010], p. 787), krýstallos, as evidenced by the suffix -allos (from *aly- according to Beekes) and the variant króstallos, is of pre-Greek origin. Cf. notes at cryo-, crust.

Other Chemical Engineering Terms


2

crystal

adjective

Definition of crystal

1 : consisting of or resembling crystal : clear, lucid
2 : relating to or using a crystal
  • a crystal radio receiver

Examples of crystal in a Sentence

  1. an unspoiled region with majestic mountains and crystal streams

Recent Examples of crystal from the Web

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

First Known Use of crystal

14th century

in the meaning defined at sense 1

See Words from the same year
NEW! Time Traveler

Crystal

geographical name Crys·tal \ ˈkris-tᵊl \

Definition of Crystal

city in southeastern Minnesota north of Minneapolis population 22,151

CRYSTAL Defined for English Language Learners

crystal

Definition of crystal for English Language Learners

  • : a small piece of a substance that has many sides and is formed when the substance turns into a solid

  • : a clear hard mineral that is either colorless or very light in color and that is used in making jewelry

  • : a special type of glass that is very clear


CRYSTAL Defined for Kids

1

crystal

noun crys·tal \ ˈkri-stᵊl \

Definition of crystal for Students

1 : quartz that is colorless and clear or nearly so
2 : a body formed by a substance hardening so that it has flat surfaces in an even arrangement
  • an ice crystal
  • a salt crystal
3 : a clear colorless glass of very good quality
4 : something clear like colorless quartz
5 : the clear cover over a clock or watch dial

2

crystal

adjective

Definition of crystal for Students

1 : made of or being like a clear colorless glass of very good quality
  • a crystal candy dish
2 : 1clear 4
  • a crystal sky

Medical Dictionary

crystal

noun crys·tal \ ˈkris-tᵊl \

medical Definition of crystal

1 : a body that is formed by the solidification of a chemical element, a compound, or a mixture and has a regularly repeating internal arrangement of its atoms and often external plane faces
2 : crystal meth; broadly : methamphetamine in any form when used illicitly

crystal

adjective


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