momentum

noun
mo·​men·​tum | \ mō-ˈmen-təm How to pronounce momentum (audio) , mə- \
plural momenta\ mō-​ˈmen-​tə How to pronounce momenta (audio) , mə-​ \ or momentums

Definition of momentum

1 : a property (see property sense 1a) of a moving body that the body has by virtue of its mass (see mass entry 2 sense 1c) and motion and that is equal to the product of the body's mass and velocity broadly : a property of a moving body that determines the length of time required to bring it to rest when under the action of a constant force or moment
2 : strength or force gained by motion or by a series of events The wagon gained momentum as it rolled down the hill.

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Examples of momentum in a Sentence

The company has had a successful year and hopes to maintain its momentum by introducing new products. The movie loses momentum toward the end.
Recent Examples on the Web That small spurt of momentum diminished as the half went along. Briar Napier, The Arizona Republic, "Phoenix Rising FC reboot season with dominating win over LA Galaxy II," 11 July 2020 But much of the momentum to change mascots or team names has focused on Native American references, particularly the name the Washington team uses. New York Times, "In Campaign Against Racism, Team Names Get New Scrutiny," 10 July 2020 While McGrath had an early lead in the race, in the past few weeks, Booker has gained a firestorm of momentum ahead of tomorrow’s primary, and is now polling 44% to McGrath’s 36%. Natalie Gontcharova, refinery29.com, "Voting In The Primaries Might Be The Only Way To Save Electoral Politics," 22 June 2020 But Booker, who has surged in popularity recently amid statewide protests over police brutality, is riding a wave of momentum. Ben Tobin, The Courier-Journal, "Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer on Amy McGrath: 'I believe that she’ll win her primary'," 18 June 2020 Scholars have found that African American cooperatives surged in numbers during periods of political momentum, first after slavery in the US ended and again in the 1970s, in the decade after the passage of the US Civil Rights Act. Lila Maclellan, Quartz at Work, "The history of Black management reveals an overlooked form of capitalism," 18 June 2020 There's no signs of momentum for such apps at a national level. Washington Post, "The Technology 202: New study reveals extent of hate speech on Reddit in right-leaning forums," 13 June 2020 In the place of that momentum, the narrative takes a left turn into a largely unrelated side story about former enemies turning into unlikely allies. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "The Last of Us Part 2 review: A less confident, less focused sequel," 12 June 2020 Democrats believe the anger has given a jolt of momentum to proposals that have been on their agenda for several years but have never been able to pass Congress. Tal Kopan, SFChronicle.com, "Bay Area lawmakers have big hand in shaping Democrats’ police reform legislation," 8 June 2020

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

1610, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for momentum

New Latin, from Latin, movement

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Time Traveler for momentum

Time Traveler

The first known use of momentum was in 1610

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Statistics for momentum

Last Updated

29 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Momentum.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/momentum. Accessed 7 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for momentum

momentum

noun
How to pronounce momentum (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of momentum

: the strength or force that something has when it is moving
: the strength or force that allows something to continue or to grow stronger or faster as time passes
physics : the property that a moving object has due to its mass and its motion

momentum

noun
mo·​men·​tum | \ mō-ˈmen-təm How to pronounce momentum (audio) \

Kids Definition of momentum

: the force that a moving body has because of its weight and motion

momentum

noun
mo·​men·​tum | \ mō-ˈment-əm, mə-ˈment- How to pronounce momentum (audio) \
plural momenta\ -​ˈment-​ə How to pronounce momenta (audio) \ or momentums

Medical Definition of momentum

: a property of a moving body that the body has by virtue of its mass and motion and that is equal to the product of the body's mass and velocity broadly : a property of a moving body that determines the length of time required to bring it to rest when under the action of a constant force

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Comments on momentum

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