ve·​loc·​i·​ty | \ və-ˈlä-sə-tē How to pronounce velocity (audio) , -ˈlä-stē \
plural velocities

Definition of velocity

1a : quickness of motion : speed the velocity of sound
b : rapidity of movement [my horse's] strong suit is grace & personal comeliness, rather than velocity— Mark Twain
c : speed imparted to something the power pitcher relies on velocity— Tony Scherman
2 : the rate of change of position along a straight line with respect to time : the derivative of position with respect to time
3a : rate of occurrence or action : rapidity the velocity of historical change— R. J. Lifton
b : rate of turnover the velocity of money

Examples of velocity in a Sentence

particles moving at high velocities measuring the velocity of sound the velocity of a bullet
Recent Examples on the Web Some other guys saw a little bit more (velocity) out of him. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, 20 July 2022 Traditional cyber controls simply can’t keep pace with the velocity, scale, and complexity of today’s digital businesses. Chris Taylor, Forbes, 18 July 2022 Sale’s average four-seam velocity in his 2022 debut: 95.0 mph. Statement made. Globe Staff,, 12 July 2022 His affinity for mechanics starts with Danny’s glossy car showroom, then the velocity of assorted expeditions, zooming through urban streets and structures with fast glances at aspects of Los Angeles. Armond White, National Review, 1 July 2022 The velocity with which trouble mounts in this novel — with its counterfeiters, con men and gangs of cross-dressing junkies — can only be achieved in New York. New York Times, 30 June 2022 The Dreo Tower Fan comes equipped with a powerful motor and unique air duct that reaches a velocity of 24 feet per second, which means the airflow is distributed around the room quickly. Nicol Natale,, 13 June 2022 The plane gained velocity — 55, 74, 85 knots — before reaching a cruising altitude of about 3,000 feet. Andrea Sachs, Washington Post, 2 June 2022 Hobbs said Pallette improved during the offseason and had a higher average velocity, plus a better changeup and curveball. Matt Jones, Arkansas Online, 20 Jan. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of velocity

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for velocity

Middle English velocite, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French veloceté, borrowed from Latin vēlōcitāt-, vēlōcitās, from vēlōc-, vēlōx "swift, rapid" (of uncertain origin) + -itāt-, -itās -ity

Note: If going back to earlier *ueg-s-l-o-, perhaps a derivative from the base of vegēre "to give vigor to, enliven" (see vegetate) or vehere "to convey" (Indo-European *u̯eǵh-; see vehicle), assimilated to the -ōk- of ātrōx, ferōx (see atrocious, ferocious). Alternatively, a derivative *uē-lo-, from the Indo-European base *h2u̯eh1- "blow" (hence, "windlike"; see wind entry 1) has been suggested.

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Time Traveler for velocity

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The first known use of velocity was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near velocity



velocity function

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Statistics for velocity

Last Updated

4 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Velocity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for velocity


ve·​loc·​i·​ty | \ və-ˈlä-sə-tē How to pronounce velocity (audio) \
plural velocities

Kids Definition of velocity

: quickness of motion : speed

More from Merriam-Webster on velocity

Nglish: Translation of velocity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of velocity for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about velocity


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