elec·​tric·​i·​ty | \ i-ˌlek-ˈtri-sə-tē How to pronounce electricity (audio) , ē-, -ˈtri-stē\
plural electricities

Definition of electricity

1a : a fundamental form of energy observable in positive and negative forms that occurs naturally (as in lightning) or is produced (as in a generator) and that is expressed in terms of the movement and interaction of electrons
b : electric current or power
2 : a science that deals with the phenomena and laws of electricity
3 : keen contagious excitement could feel the electricity in the room

Examples of electricity in a Sentence

The electricity went off during the storm. an old building with no plumbing or electricity You could feel the electricity in the room.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

In terms of living space, High Island is a serious fixer-upper—unless the buyer is ok with living in a run-down cottage without running water or electricity, that is. Maya Mcdowell, House Beautiful, "There's a Private Island in Ireland on the Market For $1.4 Million," 22 Feb. 2019 The closures are the result of low electricity prices and years of costly legal battles with environmental groups and state regulators. Robert Bryce, WSJ, "Gas Shortages Give New York an Early Taste of the Green New Deal," 15 Feb. 2019 Energy: New Jersey Democrats also passed a set of new energy laws that tried to both reduce carbon emissions and keep electricity prices from jumping too much. Andrew Prokop, Vox, "Democrats won 6 more state governments. New Jersey shows what they can do.," 21 Nov. 2018 Johnson ordered the review of generators, which will likely take three to six months to complete, in order to keep electricity prices as low as possible. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "After Trump announces new rules to save coal, TVA ponders shutting 2 coal units," 24 Aug. 2018 But the president-elect has also made expensive promises, including to freeze petrol and electricity prices in real terms, to subsidise agriculture, to pay for scholarships and to expand pensions. The Economist, "Will AMLO deliver?," 5 July 2018 Her party had grown deeply unpopular amid rising electricity prices and voter fatigue. Josh Wingrove, Bloomberg.com, "Ford's Conservatives Win Ontario Election on Populist Platform," 8 June 2018 Upgrades over the centuries have left with it with elaborate stucco decorations, a massive stone staircase, and extravagant light fixtures that mark the introduction of electricity at the end of the 19th century. WSJ, "A Belgian Castle With a Heroic Past," 13 Feb. 2019 Some of these deaths have reportedly been attributed to a surge of electricity through the charger. Brittney Mcnamara, Teen Vogue, "A Teen Died After Reportedly Being Shocked by His Headphones," 10 Dec. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of electricity

1646, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about electricity

Share electricity

Statistics for electricity

Last Updated

16 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for electricity

The first known use of electricity was in 1646

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for electricity



English Language Learners Definition of electricity

: a form of energy that is carried through wires and is used to operate machines, lights, etc.
: electric current or power
: a feeling of excitement or tension


elec·​tric·​i·​ty | \ i-ˌlek-ˈtri-sə-tē How to pronounce electricity (audio) \

Kids Definition of electricity

1 : an important form of energy that is found in nature but that can be artificially produced by rubbing together two unlike things (as glass and silk), by the action of chemicals, or by means of a generator
2 : electric current


elec·​tric·​i·​ty | \ i-ˌlek-ˈtris-ət-ē, -ˈtris-tē How to pronounce electricity (audio) \
plural electricities

Medical Definition of electricity

1a : a fundamental entity of nature consisting of negative and positive kinds, observable in the attractions and repulsions of bodies electrified by friction and in natural phenomena (as lightning or the aurora borealis), and usually utilized in the form of electric currents
b : electric current or power
2 : a science that deals with the phenomena and laws of electricity

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on electricity

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with electricity

Spanish Central: Translation of electricity

Nglish: Translation of electricity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of electricity for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about electricity

Comments on electricity

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


to reflect, repel, echo, or resound

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt-painting-a-young-scholar-and-his-tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!