Definition of friction
1a : the rubbing of one body against another the friction of sandpaper on woodb : the force that resists relative motion between two bodies in contact oil in a car engine reduces friction
2 : the clashing between two persons or parties of opposed views : disagreement friction between neighbors friction between state and federal authorities
3 : sound produced by the movement of air through a narrow constriction in the mouth or glottis
frictionlessplay \ˈfrik-shən-ləs\ adjective
Examples of friction in a Sentence
the friction of sandpaper on wood
Oil in a car engine reduces friction.
It was difficult to reach an agreement because of the friction between the two sides.
Recent Examples of friction from the Web
The freeze has caused some friction between Tillerson and the White House, which is eager to place political hands in some jobs, one former and one current U.S. official said.
Mr. Moon’s concerns, expressed in a meeting Wednesday with Sen. Richard Durbin of Illinois, the second-ranking Senate Democrat, hint at potential friction between...
The dried stem is also useful in the friction form of firestarting, and the seedstalk has been used for a torch.
Frank had friction with Doug, the man whose murderous past may be coming back to haunt him—and who, as a result of said past, will not tolerate having his loyalty questioned.
Friction continues between the Senate and the House over the size and role of state government.
The crowded battlefield has been a scene of escalating friction in recent weeks, as the government and its allies pushed their way further south where rebel fighters backed by the U.S. military also operate.
High-efficiency engineering features enhance fuel economy and maximize performance in both engines, along with a multitude of friction-reducing and cooling components.
Scientists thought that hydrological friction would absorb the forces of flippers and fins, just as desk fans can’t stir air in buildings across the street.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'friction'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of friction
earlier, therapeutic rubbing of the limbs, from Middle French, from Latin friction-, frictio, from fricare to rub; akin to Latin friare to crumble, and perhaps to Sanskrit bhrīṇanti they injure
First Known Use: 1704See Words from the same year
FRICTION Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of friction for English Language Learners
: the act of rubbing one thing against another
: the force that causes a moving object to slow down when it is touching another object
: disagreement or tension between people or groups of people
FRICTION Defined for Kids
Definition of friction for Students
1 : the rubbing of one thing against another
2 : resistance to motion between bodies in contact Oiling the parts of the machine reduces friction.
3 : disagreement among persons or groups
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