polarity

noun
po·​lar·​i·​ty | \ pō-ˈler-ə-tē How to pronounce polarity (audio) , pə-, -ˈla-rə-\
plural polarities

Definition of polarity

1 : the quality or condition inherent in a body that exhibits opposite properties or powers in opposite parts or directions or that exhibits contrasted properties or powers in contrasted parts or directions : the condition of having poles
2 : attraction toward a particular object or in a specific direction
3 : the particular state either positive or negative with reference to the two poles or to electrification
4a : diametrical opposition
b : an instance of such opposition

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Examples of polarity in a Sentence

the polarity of the candidates' views on the issue means that the voters have a clear choice to make

Recent Examples on the Web

The Emperor and Empress are the most obvious masculine and feminine archetypes, representing the polarities of father/mother, man/woman, masculine dominance and feminine sensuality. Lauren Kayes, Allure, "Written in the Cards: What Reading Tarot Taught Me About Gender," 12 June 2019 All the familiar Bassani themes and polarities—to engage or not engage, the yearning for love and defense of privacy, fear and courage—are reshuffled and deployed for maximum effect. Tim Parks, Harper's magazine, "Behind the High Walls," 10 Feb. 2019 Most magnetic materials have their own magnetic fields with their own polarity. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Tiny magnets will escort ions out of rare material from a shipwreck," 24 Aug. 2018 Electricity flows through the stator coils, creating powerful electromagnetic fields with alternate polarities. Jay Leno, Popular Mechanics, "How to Keep Classic Cars Road-Ready," 12 Dec. 2012 Archaeologists can compare the sequence of those alignments in a series of rock or sediment layers to a record of Earth's polarity reversals. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "Hominins lived in China 2.1 million years ago," 11 July 2018 Smith wondered, though, about the rigidity of the us and them polarity in Get Out. Gary Thompson, Philly.com, "Art in melting pot America: What's appropriation and what's appropriate? New movies explore," 6 July 2018 At the time, that was seen as a conservative kind of position … but the political polarities have shifted over time. Christopher Shea, Vox, "Why Jeff Sessions thinks Christians are under siege in America," 1 Aug. 2018 Other molecules such as salts and sugars are able to dissolve in water because of its polarity as well. Megan Arnett, Scientific American, "Mix It Up with Oil and Water," 24 May 2018

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

1646, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for polarity

Last Updated

23 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for polarity

The first known use of polarity was in 1646

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More Definitions for polarity

polarity

noun

English Language Learners Definition of polarity

formal : a state in which two ideas, opinions, etc., are completely opposite or very different from each other
physics : the condition of having positive and negative charges and especially magnetic or electrical poles

polarity

noun
po·​lar·​i·​ty | \ pō-ˈlar-ət-ē, pə- How to pronounce polarity (audio) \
plural polarities

Medical Definition of polarity

1 : the quality or condition inherent in a body that exhibits contrasting properties or powers in contrasting parts or directions
2 : attraction toward a particular object or in a specific direction
3 : the particular state either positive or negative with reference to the two poles or to electrification

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More from Merriam-Webster on polarity

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with polarity

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for polarity

Nglish: Translation of polarity for Spanish Speakers

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