: any of several elementary particles that are postulated to come in pairs (as in the up and down varieties) of similar mass with one member having a charge of +²/₃ and the other a charge of −¹/₃ and are held to make up hadrons

Examples of quark in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Each column is an output: The Higgs might morph into a pair of W bosons, or (more likely) a pair of quarks. Quanta Magazine, 23 May 2024 As the philosopher Ian Hacking observed, labelling people is very different from labelling quarks or microbes. Manvir Singh, The New Yorker, 6 May 2024 The standard model describes how these particles and their antiparticles interact through three forces: electromagnetism, the strong nuclear force that binds quarks, and the weak nuclear force that enables quarks and other particles to decay and change type. Byadrian Cho, science.org, 28 Mar. 2024 So, a doubly-charmed baryon is a particle made from two charm quarks and one up quark. Nathaniel Scharping, Discover Magazine, 3 Nov. 2017 Since charge is the product of the quarks, this suggests that these particles regularly circulate out beyond the area frequented by the gluons that are busy holding the whole proton together. Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, 3 Apr. 2023 But protons are made from the lightest members of the quark family. Quanta Magazine, 14 Mar. 2024 Even if this problem is resolved, the tiny effects of interactions with quark fields and the strong force will be important. Luke Caldwell, Scientific American, 16 Jan. 2024 Researchers might be able to confirm this possibility by making complementary measurements of EDMs in other particles built from quarks where the coupling is likely to be different. Luke Caldwell, Scientific American, 16 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'quark.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


coined by Murray Gell-Mann

First Known Use

1964, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of quark was in 1964

Dictionary Entries Near quark

Cite this Entry

“Quark.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quark. Accessed 14 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


: any of several particles that are believed to be components of heavier particles (as protons or neutrons)

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