experiment

noun
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-mənt How to pronounce experiment (audio) also -ˈspir- How to pronounce experiment (audio) \

Definition of experiment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : test, trial make another experiment of his suspicion— William Shakespeare
b : a tentative procedure or policy
c : an operation or procedure carried out under controlled conditions in order to discover an unknown effect or law, to test or establish a hypothesis, or to illustrate a known law
2 obsolete : experience
3 : the process of testing : experimentation

experiment

verb
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-ˌment How to pronounce experiment (audio) also -ˈspir \
experimented; experimenting; experiments

Definition of experiment (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to carry out experiments : try out a new procedure, idea, or activity

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Other Words from experiment

Verb

experimentation \ ik-​ˌsper-​ə-​mən-​ˈtā-​shən How to pronounce experiment (audio) , -​ˌmen-​ also  -​ˌspir-​ \ noun
experimenter \ ik-​ˈsper-​ə-​ˌmen-​tər How to pronounce experiment (audio) also  -​ˈspir-​ \ noun

Synonyms for experiment

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of experiment in a Sentence

Noun Students will carry out simple laboratory experiments. They did some experiments with magnets. These theories have not yet been confirmed by experiment. an experiment in living more frugally the city's experiment with a longer school year
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Four months after the kickoff of the experiment known as Project S, the quiet city in São Paulo state has acquired an atmosphere of pre-pandemic days. Kara Fox, CNN, 9 June 2021 This plant's victory is lucky, because it probably wasn't supposed to be part of the experiment. Cara Giaimo New York, Star Tribune, 5 June 2021 The suit also harkens to cruel Nazi experiments and the Nuremberg Code, which says that people need to give consent to be part of an experiment. David Heath, USA Today, 3 June 2021 In it, as part of a scientific experiment, a newborn is named X, the child’s gender kept secret. New York Times, 1 June 2021 More than 95% of the town’s eligible adults agreed to take CoronaVac as part of the experiment. Samantha Pearson, WSJ, 31 May 2021 Hawaii is a particularly handy place for this kind of experiment. Aarian Marshall, Wired, 20 May 2021 More than 1,000 people passed the test and became part of the experiment, with half ushered into the concert and the other half sent home as a control group. Washington Post, 19 May 2021 While some opponents of the experiment have raised concerns about the environmental impact of removing the species, there are thousands of mosquito species, and make up only about four percent of the mosquito population in the Florida Keys. Theresa Machemer, Smithsonian Magazine, 17 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Apple in recent years has thankfully shown more of a willingness to experiment with varying iPhone colors. Yoni Heisler, BGR, 3 June 2021 At wide receiver, the Ravens will get a chance to experiment with different alignments. Jonas Shaffer, baltimoresun.com, 26 May 2021 Students were soon lining up to experiment with it. New York Times, 25 May 2021 Google has been offering companies and academics the chance to experiment with its early-stage quantum-computing technology since last year, Dr. Neven said. Sara Castellanos, WSJ, 18 May 2021 This is an easier, low-barrier route to experiment and perhaps generate supplemental income. BostonGlobe.com, 27 Apr. 2021 The essential point is to create an environment of psychological safety where individuals feel empowered to experiment and fail without fear of retribution. Michael Cucchi, Forbes, 16 Apr. 2021 NetLogo curricula help students and researchers build computational models to experiment with complexity. Julia Brodsky, Forbes, 29 May 2021 Get some friends, a few bottles of amari, lots of little glasses, some ice to experiment with temperature and dilution, some easy snacks, and a bucolic backyard. Beth Segal, cleveland, 28 May 2021

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1787, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for experiment

Noun

Middle English, "testing, proof, remedy," borrowed from Anglo-French esperiment, borrowed from Latin experīmentum "testing, experience, proof," from experīrī "to put to the test, attempt, have experience of, undergo" + -mentum -ment — more at experience entry 1

Verb

verbal derivative of experiment entry 1

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Time Traveler for experiment

Time Traveler

The first known use of experiment was in the 14th century

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Statistics for experiment

Last Updated

12 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Experiment.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/experiment. Accessed 17 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for experiment

experiment

noun

English Language Learners Definition of experiment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a scientific test in which you perform a series of actions and carefully observe their effects in order to learn about something
: something that is done as a test : something that you do to see how well or how badly it works

experiment

verb

English Language Learners Definition of experiment (Entry 2 of 2)

: to do a scientific test in which you perform a series of actions and carefully observe their effects
: to try a new activity or a new way of doing or thinking about something

experiment

noun
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-mənt How to pronounce experiment (audio) \

Kids Definition of experiment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a trial or test made to find out about something

experiment

verb
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-ˌment How to pronounce experiment (audio) \
experimented; experimenting

Kids Definition of experiment (Entry 2 of 2)

: to try or test a new way, idea, or activity : to make experiments

experiment

noun
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-mənt also -ˈspir- \

Medical Definition of experiment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a procedure carried out under controlled conditions in order to discover an unknown effect or law, to test or establish a hypothesis, or to illustrate a known law
2 : the process of testing : experimentation

experiment

intransitive verb
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ -ˌment How to pronounce experiment (audio) \

Medical Definition of experiment (Entry 2 of 2)

: to carry out experiments

Other Words from experiment

experimentation \ ik-​ˌsper-​ə-​mən-​ˈtā-​shən, -​ˌmen-​ also -​ˌspir-​ How to pronounce experiment (audio) \ noun
experimenter \ -​ˈsper-​ə-​ˌment-​ər also -​ˈspir-​ How to pronounce experiment (audio) \ noun

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