ki·​net·​ic | \ kə-ˈne-tik How to pronounce kinetic (audio) also kī- How to pronounce kinetic (audio) \

Definition of kinetic

1 : of or relating to the motion of material bodies and the forces and energy associated therewith
2a : active, lively
b : dynamic, energizing a kinetic performer
3 : of or relating to kinetic art

Other Words from kinetic

kinetically \ kə-​ˈne-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce kinetic (audio) also  kī-​ \ adverb

Did you know?

Kinetic comes from the Greek word kinētikos, meaning "of motion," which in turn traces to the verb kinein, meaning "to move." Compared to some other English words that have their roots in Greek, kinetic is a relatively young English word; the earliest evidence we have of its use is from the 19th century. Although it deals with the motion of images rather than material bodies, the word cinema is also related to kinein. The verb kinein is the source of the Greek kinēma, meaning "movement," to which the French referred in the coining of their cinématographe. Cinématographe is the word that gave rise to the English word cinematograph, of which cinema is simply a shortened form.

Examples of kinetic in a Sentence

the novel's plot is kinetic and fast-paced, and its effect on the reader is much like that of a surfeit of caffeine the loft district is the locus of the city's kinetic arts scene
Recent Examples on the Web Ambera Wellman, whose one piece here is by far the most kinetic, technically unique, and unsettling, torques privilege in an entirely different direction. Globe Staff,, 12 May 2022 SpinLaunch is working toward a mammoth version of its kinetic launch system later this year to shoot a rocket into suborbital flight. Manasee Wagh, Popular Mechanics, 6 May 2022 The tour has been designed to be as sustainable with a wide variety of innovative green elements, from a kinetic dancefloor to electricity-generating bicycles that fans can pedal during the performance to actively charge batteries for the show. Ed Masley, The Arizona Republic, 5 May 2022 Deliberately, director Gareth Edwards' effort is rough around the edges, hectic in its cross-cutting but increasingly effective as kinetic cinema. Chicago Tribune, 4 May 2022 Crank has often been compared to a live-action cartoon, and Brian Taylor's and Mark Neveldine's kinetic directing style, combined with Statham's manic energy, gives the film a frenetic pace from the opening scene. Elliott Smith,, 4 May 2022 With riveting access and kinetic visual flair, Endangered is a sobering look at the erosion of democracy & freedom of the press in the United States and abroad. Rebecca Rubin, Variety, 19 Apr. 2022 Of my obsessive attachments, one was especially kinetic, fascinating and occasionally volatile. Lena Dunham, Vogue, 18 Apr. 2022 Artist examines the potential for amateur solutions to complex environmental problems by repurposing objects and transforming materials into kinetic and interactive sculptures. Rasputin Todd, The Enquirer, 13 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of kinetic

1864, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for kinetic

Greek kinētikos, from kinētos, from kinein — see -kinesis

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Time Traveler for kinetic

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The first known use of kinetic was in 1864

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Dictionary Entries Near kinetic



kinetic art

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Last Updated

16 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Kinetic.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for kinetic


ki·​net·​ic | \ kə-ˈne-tik How to pronounce kinetic (audio) , kī- \

Kids Definition of kinetic

: relating to the motions of objects and the forces associated with them kinetic energy


ki·​net·​ic | \ kə-ˈnet-ik How to pronounce kinetic (audio) , kī- How to pronounce kinetic (audio) \

Medical Definition of kinetic

: of or relating to the motion of material bodies and the forces and energy associated therewith

Other Words from kinetic

kinetically adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on kinetic

Nglish: Translation of kinetic for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of kinetic for Arabic Speakers


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