en·​er·​gy | \ ˈe-nər-jē How to pronounce energy (audio) \
plural energies

Definition of energy

1a : dynamic quality narrative energy
b : the capacity of acting or being active intellectual energy
c : a usually positive spiritual force the energy flowing through all people
2 : vigorous exertion of power : effort investing time and energy
3 : a fundamental entity of nature that is transferred between parts of a system in the production of physical change within the system and usually regarded as the capacity for doing work
4 : usable power (such as heat or electricity) also : the resources for producing such power

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Synonyms for energy


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Choose the Right Synonym for energy

power, force, energy, strength, might mean the ability to exert effort. power may imply latent or exerted physical, mental, or spiritual ability to act or be acted upon. the awesome power of flowing water force implies the actual effective exercise of power. used enough force to push the door open energy applies to power expended or capable of being transformed into work. a worker with boundless energy strength applies to the quality or property of a person or thing that makes possible the exertion of force or the withstanding of strain, pressure, or attack. use weight training to build your strength might implies great or overwhelming power or strength. the belief that might makes right

Examples of energy in a Sentence

The kids are always so full of energy. They devoted all their energy to the completion of the project. They devoted all their energies to the completion of the project. She puts a lot of energy into her work. The newer appliances conserve more energy.
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Recent Examples on the Web Her death was a shock to those who appreciated her energy and enthusiasm for her job, her community and her friends and loved ones. Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, 5 June 2021 Hudes and Miranda gave Chu a tour of Washington Heights, which allowed Chu to not just find the perfect shooting locations but also to immerse himself in the neighborhood and find the best way to capture its energy on screen. NBC News, 3 June 2021 The goal of these centers, as always, is to give kids a constructive outlet for their energy. Ed Masley, The Arizona Republic, 3 June 2021 His high energy keeps his class participants engaged, and the music, as well as his dance moves off and on the bike, keep people packed in his ATL classes, which are available now via Zoom and also all around the country. Victoria Uwumarogie, Essence, 3 June 2021 The younger single professionals building new supportive friend groups, discarding folks who were draining their energy, and even taking on social justice projects together. David Rock, Forbes, 2 June 2021 But little Chase kept swimming to shore, alternating between doggie paddling and floating on his back to conserve his energy. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, 1 June 2021 Tap into your adventurous and fun-loving energy again, and let loose in June. Meghan Rose, Glamour, 1 June 2021 Everybody kind of holds his energy present on that stage. Erin Jensen, USA TODAY, 31 May 2021

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

1783, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for energy

Late Latin energia, from Greek energeia activity, from energos active, from en in + ergon work — more at work

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Statistics for energy

Last Updated

7 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Energy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for energy



English Language Learners Definition of energy

: ability to be active : the physical or mental strength that allows you to do things
: natural enthusiasm and effort
: usable power that comes from heat, electricity, etc.


en·​er·​gy | \ ˈe-nər-jē How to pronounce energy (audio) \
plural energies

Kids Definition of energy

1 : ability to be active : strength of body or mind to do things or to work The children … were tired and hardly had energy enough to walk.— E. B. White, Charlotte's Web
2 : strong action or effort He puts a lot of energy into his work.
3 : usable power or the resources (as oil) used to produce usable power Our new dryer uses a lot less energy.


en·​er·​gy | \ ˈen-ər-jē How to pronounce energy (audio) \
plural energies

Medical Definition of energy

2 : the capacity for doing work


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