Definition of mechanism
1a : a piece of machinery (see machinery 1) The camera's shutter mechanism is broken.b : a process, technique, or system for achieving a result the mechanisms of peace — F. D. Roosevelt
3 : a doctrine that holds natural processes (as of life) to be mechanically determined and capable of complete explanation by the laws of physics and chemistry
4 : the fundamental processes involved in or responsible for an action, reaction, or other natural phenomenon meteorologists believe that this pressure jump is the mechanism responsible for storms and tornadoes — Think — compare defense mechanism
Examples of mechanism in a Sentence
The camera's shutter mechanism is broken.
Scientists are studying the body's mechanisms for controlling weight.
There is no mechanism in place for enforcing the new law.
a legal mechanism to prevent lobbyists from exerting unfair influence
psychological mechanisms for dealing with a tragic loss
Recent Examples of mechanism from the Web
Christiana Figueres, a former top U.N. climate official, said there was currently no formal mechanism for entities that were not countries to be full parties to the Paris accord.
The precise mechanism for withdrawal hasn't yet been determined, and White House officials cautioned plans could change until Trump makes his decision public.
But that link is tenuous: Trump’s domestic policies matter more than the Paris accord, which included no enforcement mechanism for countries that failed to meet their pledges.
In a White House with few steadying mechanisms - and one led by a Washington neophyte who bristles at structure and protocol - the daily intelligence briefing is the rare constant.
Patients play, and clinics get information about which coping mechanisms seem to work best for each person.
The conflict has undermined the effectiveness of regulatory mechanisms, and powerful people have been able to exploit the natural resources at the expense of less influential locals.
As far as the cost, preferred funding mechanisms and on-campus site of a mid-size venue between 5,000-7,000 seats?
Software makers often embed protection mechanisms in their programs to thwart reverse-engineering and copying of their programs and include language in their licensing agreements prohibiting such activity.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mechanism'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
First Known Use of mechanism
MECHANISM Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of mechanism for English Language Learners
: a piece of machinery : a mechanical part or group of parts having a particular function
: a process or system that is used to produce a particular result
: a way of acting, thinking, or behaving that helps or protects a person in a specified way
MECHANISM Defined for Kids
Definition of mechanism for Students
1 : a piece of machinery
2 : the parts by which a machine operates the mechanism of a watch
3 : the parts or steps that make up a process or activity the mechanism of government
Medical Definition of mechanism
1: a piece of machinery
2a: a bodily process or function the mechanism of healingb: the combination of mental processes by which a result is obtained psychological mechanisms
3: the fundamental physical or chemical processes involved in or responsible for an action, reaction, or other natural phenomenon
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