experiment

noun
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-mənt How to pronounce experiment (audio) also -ˈspir- How to pronounce experiment (audio) \

Definition of experiment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : test, trial make another experiment of his suspicion— William Shakespeare
b : a tentative procedure or policy
c : an operation or procedure carried out under controlled conditions in order to discover an unknown effect or law, to test or establish a hypothesis, or to illustrate a known law
2 obsolete : experience
3 : the process of testing : experimentation

experiment

verb
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-ˌment How to pronounce experiment (audio) also -ˈspir \
experimented; experimenting; experiments

Definition of experiment (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to carry out experiments : try out a new procedure, idea, or activity

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Other Words from experiment

Verb

experimentation \ ik-​ˌsper-​ə-​mən-​ˈtā-​shən How to pronounce experiment (audio) , -​ˌmen-​ also  -​ˌspir-​ \ noun
experimenter \ ik-​ˈsper-​ə-​ˌmen-​tər How to pronounce experiment (audio) also  -​ˈspir-​ \ noun

Synonyms for experiment

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of experiment in a Sentence

Noun Students will carry out simple laboratory experiments. They did some experiments with magnets. These theories have not yet been confirmed by experiment. an experiment in living more frugally the city's experiment with a longer school year
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun After nearly two years of working from home, executives have recognized that this unintended mass experiment has been highly successful. Jack Kelly, Forbes, 7 Oct. 2021 The Bitcoin experiment is a big risk for Bukele, said Valeria Vasquez, Central America analyst for risk consultancy Control Risks. Time, 2 Oct. 2021 This is particularly upsetting when evidence shows how the home confinement experiment has been incredibly successful. Ashish Prashar, CNN, 30 Sep. 2021 In Florida, the coffee experiment is just underway. Mike Snider, USA TODAY, 29 Sep. 2021 Rogers says the experiment was eye-opening for someone who has spent much of his career studying medieval warfare. Eric Niiler, Wired, 29 Sep. 2021 Will Zeng, the head of quantum research at Goldman Sachs, said that the experiment was able to show that with a sufficiently powerful enough quantum computer, there should be a significant performance improvement in pricing financial risk. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, 22 Sep. 2021 A century on, Hiram Johnson’s idealistic experiment in direct democracy is a miserable failure. Timothy Noah, The New Republic, 16 Sep. 2021 This experiment is worthy of Wall Street’s attention. Charley Grant, WSJ, 9 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Just as a week earlier in Detroit, when the 49ers lead shrunk too much to give Lance some extended playing time, there wasn’t really a time on Sunday to experiment. Ann Killion, San Francisco Chronicle, 19 Sep. 2021 Red carpet events like the Emmys are the time to experiment with new shapes and decals. Gabi Thorne, Allure, 19 Sep. 2021 With that in mind, Saturday’s match against Orange County could be a time for Schantz to experiment. Theo Mackie, The Arizona Republic, 18 Sep. 2021 The mom-of-three has had a long time to experiment with what works for her, given that she's been a Neutrogena brand ambassador for 14 years. Jessica Radloff, Glamour, 20 May 2021 But Harsin also sees spring as a good time to experiment. Giana Han, al, 16 Mar. 2021 That's not necessarily enough in today's hybrid environment, yet with smart investments in technology and a willingness to experiment, retailers can add even more pizazz to brick-and-mortar. Orlee Tal, Forbes, 8 Sep. 2021 Via fluffy fabrics, matching sets, platform boots, and asymmetrical silhouettes, Bratz dolls did more than inspire young fashion lovers the opportunity to experiment with clothes. Eliza Huber, refinery29.com, 27 Aug. 2021 That’s both an advantage and a disadvantage; [Norwegian designers] have more freedom to experiment, try new new things, and find their way. Vogue, 25 Aug. 2021

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1787, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for experiment

Noun

Middle English, "testing, proof, remedy," borrowed from Anglo-French esperiment, borrowed from Latin experīmentum "testing, experience, proof," from experīrī "to put to the test, attempt, have experience of, undergo" + -mentum -ment — more at experience entry 1

Verb

verbal derivative of experiment entry 1

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Time Traveler for experiment

Time Traveler

The first known use of experiment was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near experiment

experiential time

experiment

experimental

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Statistics for experiment

Last Updated

10 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Experiment.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/experiment. Accessed 18 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for experiment

experiment

noun

English Language Learners Definition of experiment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a scientific test in which you perform a series of actions and carefully observe their effects in order to learn about something
: something that is done as a test : something that you do to see how well or how badly it works

experiment

verb

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

: to do a scientific test in which you perform a series of actions and carefully observe their effects
: to try a new activity or a new way of doing or thinking about something

experiment

noun
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-mənt How to pronounce experiment (audio) \

Kids Definition of experiment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a trial or test made to find out about something

experiment

verb
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-ˌment How to pronounce experiment (audio) \
experimented; experimenting

Kids Definition of experiment (Entry 2 of 2)

: to try or test a new way, idea, or activity : to make experiments

experiment

noun
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ ik-ˈsper-ə-mənt also -ˈspir- \

Medical Definition of experiment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a procedure carried out under controlled conditions in order to discover an unknown effect or law, to test or establish a hypothesis, or to illustrate a known law
2 : the process of testing : experimentation

experiment

intransitive verb
ex·​per·​i·​ment | \ -ˌment How to pronounce experiment (audio) \

Medical Definition of experiment (Entry 2 of 2)

: to carry out experiments

Other Words from experiment

experimentation \ ik-​ˌsper-​ə-​mən-​ˈtā-​shən, -​ˌmen-​ also -​ˌspir-​ How to pronounce experiment (audio) \ noun
experimenter \ -​ˈsper-​ə-​ˌment-​ər also -​ˈspir-​ How to pronounce experiment (audio) \ noun

More from Merriam-Webster on experiment

Nglish: Translation of experiment for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of experiment for Arabic Speakers

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