quick·​sil·​ver | \ ˈkwik-ˌsil-vər How to pronounce quicksilver (audio) \

Definition of quicksilver

 (Entry 1 of 2)



Definition of quicksilver (Entry 2 of 2)

: resembling or suggestive of quicksilver especially : mercurial sense 3

Examples of quicksilver in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The quicksilver repartee for which Sir Tom is renowned is hushed. The Economist, "Laughter in the dark Tom Stoppard’s haunting new play about the Holocaust," 13 Feb. 2020 At times, watching the Warriors was like watching a great opera unfold: masters at work, all high-arching three-point shots and quicksilver passes. Jason Parham, Wired, "The Warriors and the Myth of the Silicon Valley-Driven Team," 13 Jan. 2020 Both can assume any guise and, when smashed or shredded, mold themselves back into shape; the difference is that, whereas the earlier model was like quicksilver, the new one appears to be made of molasses. Anthony Lane, The New Yorker, "End Times in “Terminator: Dark Fate” and “Marriage Story”," 1 Nov. 2019 This introduction could sink a less gifted director, but Almodóvar is a virtuoso of quicksilver changes and soon cuts to a young boy at a river where women wash clothes and break into melodious song. Manohla Dargis, New York Times, "‘Pain and Glory’ Review: Almodóvar’s Dazzling Art of Self-Creation," 3 Oct. 2019 The ensemble regained its footing in the finale, which offered a rhetorically dramatic opening, gorgeous playing from the Civic winds and a quicksilver character that is the essence of Mendelssohn. Howard Reich, chicagotribune.com, "Review: Ken-David Masur starts a promising new chapter with Civic Orchestra," 22 Oct. 2019 With Steven Gerrard pinging inch-perfect balls his way, the quicksilver striker swiftly became one of the most potent forwards in the Premier League era. SI.com, "FIFPro Awards: Ranking the 6 Greatest World XIs," 5 Sep. 2019 Filigree trills hovered like hummingbirds and quicksilver scales, and delicate grace notes melted into an expressive chorale. Washington Post, "Zoltan Fejervari shows off his technique with a program of gems," 18 Nov. 2019 Arthur Ashe was a quicksilver figure on the court, erratic at times but never boring. Edward Kosner, WSJ, "‘Arthur Ashe’ Review: A Hard Road to Glory," 17 Aug. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The comment was made when internet companies were thought to be quicksilver entities rather than institutions building legacies. Joanne Mcneil, Harper's magazine, "Search and Destroy," 20 Jan. 2020

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


1655, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of quicksilver was before the 12th century

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Last Updated

21 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Quicksilver.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quicksilver. Accessed 23 Feb. 2020.

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How to pronounce quicksilver (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of quicksilver

 (Entry 1 of 2)

old-fashioned + literary : a



English Language Learners Definition of quicksilver (Entry 2 of 2)

literary : changing quickly and often


quick·​sil·​ver | \ ˈkwik-ˌsil-vər How to pronounce quicksilver (audio) \

Kids Definition of quicksilver


quick·​sil·​ver | \ -ˌsil-vər How to pronounce quicksilver (audio) \

Medical Definition of quicksilver

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More from Merriam-Webster on quicksilver

Spanish Central: Translation of quicksilver

Nglish: Translation of quicksilver for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about quicksilver

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