phys·​i·​cist | \ˈfi-zə-sist, ˈfiz-sist\

Definition of physicist 

1 : a specialist in physics

2 archaic : a person skilled in natural science

Examples of physicist in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

An ambitious program to blast cameras far beyond the solar system was announced in April 2016 by internet investor and science philanthropist Yuri Milner, late physicist Stephen Hawking and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Scientific American, "Astronomy at the Speed of Light," 3 July 2018 Celebrating Hawking's life: About 1,000 people attended the memorial service for British physicist Stephen Hawking, The Post's Lindsey Bever reports. Paulina Firozi, Washington Post, "The Energy 202: Kilauea's eruption reignites debate over Hawaii's geothermal plant," 18 June 2018 Sound of Stephen Hawking to go on cosmic journey The voice of legendary physicist Stephen Hawking will be beamed into a black hole Friday while his ashes are being interred at London's Westminster Abbey, his family said. Editors, USA TODAY, "Paul Manafort hearing, Stephen Hawking memorial, 'Incredibles 2': 5 things to know Friday," 15 June 2018 On Friday, the ashes of physicist Stephen Hawking will be interred at Westminister Abbey in London, not far from the grave of Sir Isaac Newton. CBS News, "Calendar: Week of June 11," 10 June 2018 The ashes of celebrated physicist Stephen Hawking will be interred at London's Westminster Abbey near the grave of Isaac Newton. Fox News, "Ashes of Stephen Hawking to be placed in Westminster Abbey," 20 Mar. 2018 Famed physicist Stephen Hawking died Tuesday at the age of 76, his family confirmed. Juliana Rose Pignataro, Newsweek, "Stephen Hawking Predictions: Most Notable Theories From Physicist Before Death At 76," 14 Mar. 2018 And just as an influx of European scientists into America in the mid-20th century invigorated progress, so China’s often insular scientific world would be cracked open by an infusion of foreign physicists. The Economist, "Lord of the ringsThe next super-collider should be built in China," 11 Jan. 2018 The team of physicists has developed a liquid made from an emulsion of graphene, water and oil. Emily Matchar, Smithsonian, "This Low-Cost, Graphene Device Could Help Monitor a Baby’s Health," 22 Feb. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of physicist

circa 1840, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about physicist

Statistics for physicist

Last Updated

5 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for physicist

The first known use of physicist was circa 1840

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for physicist



English Language Learners Definition of physicist

: a scientist who studies or is a specialist in physics


phys·​i·​cist | \ˈfi-zə-səst \

Kids Definition of physicist

: a person specializing in physics


phys·​i·​cist | \ˈfiz-(ə-)səst \

Medical Definition of physicist 

: a specialist in physics

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on physicist

Spanish Central: Translation of physicist

Nglish: Translation of physicist for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of physicist for Arabic Speakers

Comments on physicist

What made you want to look up physicist? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


obstinately defiant of authority

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Autumn Words of the Day 2018

  • a-top-down-image-of-road-through-an-autumn-forest
  • Which is a synonym of fugacious?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!