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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
mercury
noun
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ Lighting is by two Floraset mercury vapour lamps which were originally set on a timer to give 11 hours of light.
▪ The mercury hovered around ninety, and so did the humidity.
▪ The mercury method, so popular in the Roman period for gilding, can also be used for silvering bronze and brass.
▪ The final stage of circuit board construction is to insert the integrated circuit IC1 with the identification notch next to the mercury switch.
▪ The monostable is an edge-triggered device which resets the timer every time the mercury rolls on to the switch contacts.
▪ The restaurant is amply air-conditioned, since the mercury often creeps north in South Bay.
▪ The silvery substance clung to his skin, looking like tiny beads of mercury, as slippery as graphite between his fingers.
▪ They calculate severe leaching of such toxic metals as beryllium, aluminum, mercury, lead, and cadmium.
The Collaborative International Dictionary
mercury

Poison \Poi"son\, n. [F. poison, in Old French also, a potion, fr. L. potio a drink, draught, potion, a poisonous draught, fr. potare to drink. See Potable, and cf. Potion.]

  1. Any agent which, when introduced into the animal organism, is capable of producing a morbid, noxious, or deadly effect upon it; as, morphine is a deadly poison; the poison of pestilential diseases.

  2. That which taints or destroys moral purity or health; as, the poison of evil example; the poison of sin. Poison ash. (Bot.)

    1. A tree of the genus Amyris ( Amyris balsamifera) found in the West Indies, from the trunk of which a black liquor distills, supposed to have poisonous qualities.

    2. The poison sumac ( Rhus venenata). [U. S.] Poison dogwood (Bot.), poison sumac. Poison fang (Zo["o]l.), one of the superior maxillary teeth of some species of serpents, which, besides having the cavity for the pulp, is either perforated or grooved by a longitudinal canal, at the lower end of which the duct of the poison gland terminates. See Illust. under Fang. Poison gland (Biol.), a gland, in animals or plants, which secretes an acrid or venomous matter, that is conveyed along an organ capable of inflicting a wound. Poison hemlock (Bot.), a poisonous umbelliferous plant ( Conium maculatum). See Hemlock. Poison ivy (Bot.), a poisonous climbing plant (formerly Rhus Toxicodendron, or Rhus radicans, now classified as Toxicodendron radicans) of North America. It is common as a climbing vine, especially found on tree trunks, or walls, or as a low, spreading vine or as a shrub. As a low vine it grows well in lightly shaded areas, recognizable by growing in clusters of three leaves. Its leaves are trifoliate, rhombic-ovate, and variously notched. Its form varies slightly from location to location, leading to some speculation that it may consist of more than one species. Many people are poisoned by it, though some appear resistant to its effects. Touching the leaves may leave a residue of an oil on the skin, and if not washed off quickly, sensitive areas of skin become reddened and develop multiple small blisters, lasting for several days to several weeks, and causing a persistent itch. The toxic reaction is due to an oil, present in all parts of the plant except the pollen, called urushiol, the active component of which is the compound pentadecylacatechol. See Poison sumac. It is related to poison oak, and is also called mercury. Poison nut. (Bot.)

      1. Nux vomica.

      2. The tree which yields this seed ( Strychnos Nuxvomica). It is found on the Malabar and Coromandel coasts.

        Poison oak (Bot.), a dermatitis-producing plant often lumped together with the poison ivy ( Toxicodendron radicans) in common terminology, but more properly distinguished as the more shrubby Toxicodendron quercifolium (syn. Toxicodendron diversilobum), common in California and Oregon. Opinion varies as to whether the poison oak and poison ivy are only variants of a single species. See poison ivy, above.

        Poison sac. (Zo["o]l.) Same as Poison gland, above. See Illust. under Fang.

        Poison sumac (Bot.), a poisonous shrub formerly considered to be of the genus Rhus ( Rhus venenata), but now classified as Toxicodendron vernix; -- also called poison ash, poison dogwood, and poison elder. It has pinnate leaves on graceful and slender common petioles, and usually grows in swampy places. Both this plant and the poison ivy ( Toxicodendron radicans, formerly Rhus Toxicodendron) have clusters of smooth greenish white berries, while the red-fruited species of this genus are harmless. The tree ( Rhus vernicifera) which yields the celebrated Japan lacquer is almost identical with the poison sumac, and is also very poisonous. The juice of the poison sumac also forms a lacquer similar to that of Japan.

        Syn: Venom; virus; bane; pest; malignity.

        Usage: Poison, Venom. Poison usually denotes something received into the system by the mouth, breath, etc. Venom is something discharged from animals and received by means of a wound, as by the bite or sting of serpents, scorpions, etc. Hence, venom specifically implies some malignity of nature or purpose.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
Mercury

"the Roman god Mercury," mid-12c., from Latin Mercurius "Mercury," originally a god of tradesmen and thieves, from merx "merchandise" (see market (n.)); or perhaps [Klein, Tucker] from Etruscan and influenced by merx. Later he was associated with Greek Hermes. The planet closest to the sun so called in classical Latin (late 14c. in English). A hypothetical inhabitant of the planet was a Mercurean (1855) or a Mercurian (1868). For the metallic element, see mercury.

mercury

silver-white fluid metallic element, late 14c., from Medieval Latin mercurius, from Latin Mercurius (see Mercury). Prepared from cinnabar, it was one of the seven metals (bodies terrestrial) known to the ancients, which were coupled in astrology and alchemy with the seven known heavenly bodies. This one probably so associated for its mobility. The others were Sun/gold, Moon/silver, Mars/iron, Saturn/lead, Jupiter/tin, Venus/copper. The Greek name for it was hydrargyros "liquid silver," which gives the element its symbol, Hg. Compare quicksilver.

Wiktionary
mercury

n. 1 A metal. 2 # A silvery-colored, toxic, metallic chemical element, liquid at room temperature, with atomic number 80 and symbol Hg. (from 14th c.) 3 # (context science historical English) One of the elemental principles formerly thought to be present in all metals. (from 15th c.) 4 # The mercury as used in a barometer or thermometer; ambient temperature. (from 17th c.) 5 # (context obsolete English) liveliness, volatility. (17th-18th c.) 6 A plant. 7 # An annual plant, (taxlink Mercurialis annua species noshow=1), formerly grown for its medicinal properties; French mercury. (from 14th c.) 8 # A similar edible plant, (taxlink Chenopodium bonus-henricus species noshow=1), otherwise known as English mercury or allgood. (from 15th c.) 9 # (context US regional English) The poison oak or poison ivy. (from 18th c.)

WordNet
mercury
  1. n. a heavy silvery toxic univalent and bivalent metallic element; the only metal that is liquid at ordinary temperatures [syn: quicksilver, hydrargyrum, Hg, atomic number 80]

  2. (Roman mythology) messenger of Jupiter and god of commerce; counterpart of Greek Hermes

  3. the smallest planet and the nearest to the sun

  4. temperature measured by a mercury thermometer; "the mercury was falling rapidly"

Wikipedia
Mercury

Mercury usually refers to:

  • Mercury (element), a metal
  • Mercury (planet)
  • Mercury (mythology), a Roman god

Mercury may also refer to:

Mercury (planet)

Mercury is the smallest and innermost planet in the Solar System. Its orbital period (about 88 Earth days) is less than any other planet in the Solar System. Seen from Earth, it appears to move around its orbit in about 116 days. It has no known natural satellites. It is named after the Roman deity Mercury, the messenger to the gods.

Partly because it has almost no atmosphere to retain heat, Mercury's surface temperature varies diurnally more than any other planet in the Solar System, ranging from at night to during the day in some equatorial regions. The poles are constantly below . Mercury's axis has the smallest tilt of any of the Solar System's planets (about of a degree), and its orbital eccentricity is the largest of all known planets in the Solar System. At aphelion, Mercury is about 1.5 times as far from the Sun as it is at perihelion. Mercury's surface is heavily cratered and similar in appearance to the Moon, indicating that it has been geologically inactive for billions of years.

Mercury is tidally or gravitationally locked with the Sun in a 3:2 resonance, and rotates in a way that is unique in the Solar System. As seen relative to the fixed stars, it rotates on its axis exactly three times for every two revolutions it makes around the Sun. As seen from the Sun, in a frame of reference that rotates with the orbital motion, it appears to rotate only once every two Mercurian years. An observer on Mercury would therefore see only one day every two years.

Because Mercury orbits the Sun within Earth's orbit (as does Venus), it can appear in Earth's sky in the morning or the evening, but not in the middle of the night. Also, like Venus and the Moon, it displays a complete range of phases as it moves around its orbit relative to Earth. Although Mercury can appear as a bright object when viewed from Earth, its proximity to the Sun makes it more difficult to see than Venus. Two spacecraft have visited Mercury: flew by in 1974 and 1975; and MESSENGER, launched in 2004, orbited Mercury over 4,000 times in four years, before exhausting its fuel and crashing into the planet's surface on April 30, 2015.

Mercury (programming language)

Mercury is a functional logic programming language geared towards real-world applications. It was initially developed at the University of Melbourne Computer Science department under the supervision of Zoltan Somogyi. The first version was developed by Fergus Henderson, Thomas Conway and Zoltan Somogyi and was released on April 8, 1995.

Mercury is a purely declarative logic language. It is related to both Prolog and Haskell. It features a strong, static, polymorphic type system, as well as a strong mode and determinism system.

The official implementation, the Melbourne Mercury Compiler, is available for most Unix platforms, including Mac OS X, as well as for Microsoft Windows.

Mercury (Marvel Comics)

Mercury (Cessily Kincaid) is a fictional character from Marvel Comic's X-Men series. She is a teenage member of the student body at the Xavier Institute and a recurring member of the X-Men. She first appeared in New Mutants, vol. 2 #2 in August 2003.

Mercury (Longview album)

Mercury is the first full-length and currently the only studio album by the British indie rock band Longview.

Mercury (cipher machine)

Mercury was a British cipher machine used by the Air Ministry from 1950 until at least the early 1960s. Mercury was an online rotor machine descended from Typex, but modified to achieve a longer cycle length using a so-called double-drum basket system.

Mercury (magazine)

Mercury is a science magazine that features articles and columns about astronomy for a general audience. It is the bi-monthly magazine of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific and was first published in 1972.

Mercury has its headquarters in San Francisco. Current and past Mercury columnists include Christopher Conselice, Eric Schulman, and Christopher Wanjek.

Mercury (Madder Mortem album)

Mercury is the debut album by the Norwegian dark metal band Madder Mortem. The members involved on this release left shortly after, leaving only BP and Agnete M. Kirkevaag. The music is described as "dreamy" with folk elements. Following this release the band's music took an extreme turn towards heavier elements.

Mercury (mythology)

Mercury (; Latin: Mercurius ) is a major Roman god, being one of the Dii Consentes within the ancient Roman pantheon. He is the patron god of financial gain, commerce, eloquence (and thus poetry), messages/communication (including divination), travelers, boundaries, luck, trickery and thieves; he is also the guide of souls to the underworld. He was considered the son of Maia and Jupiter in Roman mythology. His name is possibly related to the Latin word merx ("merchandise"; compare merchant, commerce, etc.), mercari (to trade), and merces (wages); another possible connection is the Proto-Indo-European root merĝ- for "boundary, border" (cf. Old English "mearc", Old Norse "mark" and Latin "margō") and Greek οὖρος (by analogy of Arctūrus/Ἀρκτοῦρος), as the "keeper of boundaries," referring to his role as bridge between the upper and lower worlds. In his earliest forms, he appears to have been related to the Etruscan deity Turms; both gods share characteristics with the Greek god Hermes. He is often depicted holding the caduceus in his left hand.

Mercury (automobile)

Mercury is a defunct American-market division of automobile manufacturer Ford Motor Company. Created in 1938 by Edsel Ford, Mercury was an entry-level premium brand intended to bridge the price gap between the Ford and Lincoln vehicle lines (with the division forming half of the later Lincoln-Mercury division). As similar brands, Buick and Oldsmobile played a similar role within General Motors while Mercury competed against the namesake brand of Chrysler (following the cancellation of the DeSoto brand in 1960).

Although the initial Mercury Eight was unique to the division, to save development costs (using rebadging, to various extents), nearly all Mercury vehicles would share bodies with Lincoln and Ford vehicles, or both; during the development of the Edsel, several vehicles would derive common chassis underpinnings with Mercury vehicles.

In the summer of 2010, Ford Motor Company announced the discontinuation of the Mercury division as it consolidated its marketing and engineering efforts on the Ford and Lincoln brands Production of Mercury vehicles ceased in the fourth quarter of 2010. At the time, Ford sold Mercury vehicles in the United States, Mexico, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Middle East.

The final Mercury automobile, a 2011 Mercury Grand Marquis, rolled off the assembly line on January 4, 2011.

Mercury (American Music Club album)

Mercury is the sixth album by San Francisco indie rock group American Music Club, released in early 1993. It was their major-label debut.

"Over and Done" and "Johnny Mathis' Feet" were released as singles on the 7", CD single and cassingle formats. The Johnny Mathis' Feet CD had a 10-track bonus live CD; it was recorded at Slim's in San Francisco on June 15, 1993, and is usually called Live at Slim's. "I've Been a Mess" has remained a staple of the band's concerts to the present day. The album's title comes from a beverage featured in the lyrics of "Challenger."

All lyrics were written by Mark Eitzel; all songs by Eitzel/ American Music Club.

A black-and-white 11-minute promotional VHS tape, generally referred to as "1992 press kit," was issued in advance of the album's release. This contained interviews with each band member, live performances, studio footage, clips of Eitzel riding his bike by the ocean, etc. The band members talk at length about the origins of AMC, with two of them commenting on how scary it is to be in the band.

Spin magazine voted Mercury the 14th best album of 1993.

Mercury (comics)

Mercury, in comics, may refer to:

  • Mercury (Marvel Comics), a.k.a. Cessily Kincaid, a Marvel Comics character who can turn herself into a mercurial substance
  • Mercury (Amalgam Comics), a combination of the characters Impulse and Quicksilver made for Amalgam Comics
  • Hermes (Marvel Comics), an Olympian god known to the Romans as Mercury in Marvel Comics.
  • Max Mercury, a DC Comics superhero Speedster.
  • Makkari (comics), an Eternal who once used the name "Mercury" when operating as a crime fighter.
  • Mercury, a member of the Metal Men, DC comics characters made of elements from the periodic table.
  • Mercury, a member of Cerebro's X-Men.
Mercury (cyclecar)

The Mercury was a cyclecar built in Detroit, Michigan, by the Mercury Cyclecar Company in 1914. The Mercury had a self-supporting body that eliminated the need for a chassis frame. The vehicle was equipped with a two-cylinder air-cooled engine. It used a friction transmission and belt final drive. Body styles were monocar, tandem two-seater and light van.

Mercury (novel)

Mercury is a 2005 science fiction novel by American writer Ben Bova. The story chronicles the chain of events which leads Mance Bracknell, a shy but gifted engineer student, from the pinnacle of success to the depths of misery and vengeance.

Mercury (TV series)

Mercury was an Australian television series that launched in 1996. It featured Geoffrey Rush.

Mercury (name)

Mercury is both a surname and a given name. Notable people with the name include:

Surname:

  • Daniela Mercury, Brazilian singer
  • Eric Mercury, Canadian singer
  • Freddie Mercury, singer of the rock group Queen
  • Joey Mercury or Adam Birch, professional wrestler

Given name:

  • Mercury Hayes, former professional American football wide receiver born in 1973
Mercury (pigeon)

Mercury was a pigeon who received the Dickin Medal in 1946 from the People's Dispensary for Sick Animals for bravery in service during the Second World War. It served with the National Pigeon Service (Special Section), and the award was conferred to it for its work carrying out a special task to deliver secret messages involving a flight from Northern Denmark in 1942.

Mercury (satellite)

Mercury, also known as Advanced Vortex, was a series of three United States spy satellites launched in the 1990s. These satellites were launched and operated by the National Reconnaissance Office with the participation of the United States Air Force. Two of the three launches from Cape Canaveral were successful, with the third failing to achieve orbit. The satellites collect SIGINT from near- geosynchronous orbits. Their precise mission and capabilities are highly classified, but they are widely believed to be successors to the Vortex/Chalet satellites.

The last launch attempt, on 12 August 1998 failed, with the USD $700–800 million satellite and the $344 million Titan IV(401)A launch vehicle exploding over the Atlantic Ocean. The failure was caused by a short circuit in the guidance system, which lost power and reset, causing the vehicle to pitch over. This in turn led to premature separation of one of the SRBs, which automatically self-destructed. The resulting explosion also destroyed the core vehicle, and the second SRB then initiated its own self-destruction. Roughly 4 seconds later the Range Safety Officer also issued a self-destruct signal to the rocket. Observers estimate each spacecraft has a mass of 4,000–5,000 kg.

Mercury (song)

"Mercury" is a song by Bloc Party. It was produced by Jacknife Lee. Like " Flux", the band's previous single, the song uses mostly electronic instruments. The song was first played on Zane Lowe's show on Radio 1 on 7 July 2008 and was uploaded to the Radio 1 website about fifteen minutes later. The single was made available for digital download on 10 July 2008. The track was named Single of the Week by Drowned in Sound on 11 August 2008. It peaked at number 16 on the UK Singles Chart. The song also appeared in the EA Sports game Fight Night Round 4 as well as Rockstar Games game Midnight Club: Los Angeles. An official remix by Hervé, subtitled "Hervé Is in Disarray Remix", was released on 2009's Intimacy Remixed.

Mercury (train)

Mercury was the name used by the New York Central Railroad for a family of daytime streamliner passenger trains operating between midwestern cities. The Mercury train sets were designed by the noted industrial designer Henry Dreyfuss, and are considered a prime example of Art Deco design. The success of the Mercury led to Dreyfuss getting the commission for the 1938 redesign of the NYC's flagship, the 20th Century Limited, perhaps the most famous train in America.

The first Mercury, operating on a daily roundtrip between Cleveland and Detroit, was introduced on July 13, 1936. The Chicago Mercury, between Chicago and Detroit, and the Cincinnati Mercury, between Cincinnati and Detroit, followed. The Mercurys lasted until the 1950s, with the final survivor, the original Cleveland Mercury, making its last run on July 11, 1959.

A fourth train, the James Whitcomb Riley between Chicago and Cincinnati, used the same design for its train sets and is considered part of the Mercury family, although it did not bear the Mercury name. The Riley debuted in 1941 and lasted into the Amtrak era, though no longer a streamliner.

Mercury (element)

Mercury is a chemical element with symbol Hg and atomic number 80. It is commonly known as quicksilver and was formerly named hydrargyrum . A heavy, silvery d-block element, mercury is the only metallic element that is liquid at standard conditions for temperature and pressure; the only other element that is liquid under these conditions is bromine, though metals such as caesium, gallium, and rubidium melt just above room temperature.

Mercury occurs in deposits throughout the world mostly as cinnabar ( mercuric sulfide). The red pigment vermilion is obtained by grinding natural cinnabar or synthetic mercuric sulfide.

Mercury is used in thermometers, barometers, manometers, sphygmomanometers, float valves, mercury switches, mercury relays, fluorescent lamps and other devices, though concerns about the element's toxicity have led to mercury thermometers and sphygmomanometers being largely phased out in clinical environments in favor of alternatives such as alcohol- or galinstan-filled glass thermometers and thermistor- or infrared-based electronic instruments. Likewise, mechanical pressure gauges and electronic strain gauge sensors have replaced mercury sphygmomanometers. Mercury remains in use in scientific research applications and in amalgam for dental restoration in some locales. It is used in fluorescent lighting. Electricity passed through mercury vapor in a fluorescent lamp produces short-wave ultraviolet light which then causes the phosphor in the tube to fluoresce, making visible light.

Mercury poisoning can result from exposure to water-soluble forms of mercury (such as mercuric chloride or methylmercury), by inhalation of mercury vapor, or by ingesting any form of mercury.

Mercury (newspaper)

Mercury or The Mercury is the name of the following newspapers:

Mercury (toy manufacturer)

Mercury was a brand of diecast toy cars manufactured in Italy from about 1945 through 1970s. Along with Dinky Toys in England, Mercury was a pioneer in 1:43 scale diecast toys made in Europe. Today, Mercury models are rather rare and not easy to find. The company logo was the word Mercury within a rectangle (often solid colored) with a round gear behind the company name.

Usage examples of "mercury".

The braziers began giving off a thick, resinous, overly sweet smoke with something astringent to it but I had no way of knowing if it was, in fact, the perfume the grimoire had specified for operations ruled by the planet Mercury: a mixture of mastic, frankincense, cinquefoil, achates, and the dried and powdered brains of a fox.

It deserves notice that he experimented with the most boasted substances,-- cinchona, aconite, mercury, bryonia, belladonna.

This produces a greater suction in the right-hand side of the mercury tube, which draws the mercury up on that side and down on the other, until the proper electrical contact is broken and the ailerons are returned to neutral position.

The various preparations of mercury have a profound, alterative effect upon the system.

This famous courtezan, whose beauty was justly celebrated, feeling herself eaten away by an internal disease, promised to give a hundred louis to a doctor named Lucchesi, who by dint of mercury undertook to cure her, but Ancilla specified on the agreement that she was not to pay the aforesaid sum till Lucchesi had offered with her an amorous sacrifice.

In the kitchen were hung our two mercury barometers, four aneroids, barograph, thermograph, and one thermometer.

Beneath it the city dropped away in walls, roofs, archaistic chimneys and lamplit streets, goblin lights of human-piloted vehicles, to the harbor, the sweep of Venture Bay, ships bound to and from the Sunward Islands and remoter regions of the Boreal Ocean, which glimmered like mercury in the afterglow of Charlemagne.

The salts of silver, mercury, gold, copper, nickel, and platinum, chromic and arsenious acids, cause great inflection with extreme quickness, and are deadly poisons.

In addition to the nitric acid and glycerin Yousef mixed into nitro, he imported sodium azide, the primary explosive used to detonate airbags, along with mercury fulminate, another explosive.

Sulphur, Mercury, Salt, volatilized and fixed, compose the Azoth, 773-l.

She had already began to take his remedies, which were partly composed of mercury.

He began his treatment by putting me on a severe regimen, ordering baths, and applying mercury locally.

At this moment Mercury unfortunately approached his caduceus a little too close to the sinister object on the floor.

Mercury had laid aside his caduceus, and Neptune had slipped his trident under the table.

The next was something very like the caduceus, the serpent-twined staff of Mercury which is the symbol of the medical profession.