Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Any of a category of electropositive elements that usually have a shiny surface, are generally good conductors of heat and electricity, and can be melted or fused, hammered into thin sheets, or drawn into wires. Typical metals form salts with nonmetals, basic oxides with oxygen, and alloys with one another.
  • noun An alloy of two or more metallic elements.
  • noun An object made of metal.
  • noun Basic character; mettle.
  • noun Broken stones used for road surfaces or railroad beds.
  • noun Molten glass, especially when used in glassmaking.
  • noun Molten cast iron.
  • noun Printing Type made of metal.
  • noun Music Heavy metal.
  • transitive verb To cover or surface (a roadbed, for example) with broken stones.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To put metal on; cover, as roads, with broken stones or metal.
  • An abbreviation of metallurgy.
  • noun In mining:
  • noun Cast-iron.
  • noun Hard rock; whin or igneous rock.
  • noun plural A general name for coal-bearing strata.
  • noun A metallic alloy used for the production, by casting in iron or brass molds, of cheap ornamental articles to be electroplated, usually consisting of lead and tin hardened by antimony, with occasional addition of other metals.
  • noun An elementary substance, or one which in the present state of chemical science is undecompos able, and which possesses opacity, luster of a peculiar kind (commonly called metallic, because very characteristic of the metals), conductivity for heat and electricity, and plasticity, or capability of being drawn, squeezed, or hammered with change of shape but no loss of continuity.
  • noun In printing and type-founding See type-metal.
  • noun The material of glass, pottery, etc., in a state of fusion.
  • noun plural The rails of a railway.
  • noun In heraldry, one of the two tinctures or and argent—that is, gold and silver.
  • noun Materials for roads; especially, the broken stones used as ballasting on a road-bed or railway.
  • noun The aggregate number, mass, or effective power of the guns carried by a ship of war.
  • noun That of which anything is composed; formative material; hence, constitution; intrinsic quality, as of a person.
  • noun Courage; spirit; mettle. In this sense now always mettle.
  • noun A mine.
  • noun See blue.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To cover with metal
  • noun (Chem.) An elementary substance, as sodium, calcium, or copper, whose oxide or hydroxide has basic rather than acid properties, as contrasted with the nonmetals, or metalloids. No sharp line can be drawn between the metals and nonmetals, and certain elements partake of both acid and basic qualities, as chromium, manganese, bismuth, etc.
  • noun Ore from which a metal is derived; -- so called by miners.
  • noun obsolete A mine from which ores are taken.
  • noun The substance of which anything is made; material; hence, constitutional disposition; character; temper.
  • noun Courage; spirit; mettle. See Mettle.
  • noun The broken stone used in macadamizing roads and ballasting railroads.
  • noun The effective power or caliber of guns carried by a vessel of war.
  • noun Glass in a state of fusion.
  • noun engraving The rails of a railroad.
  • noun (Chem.) any one of the metals, as iron, lead, etc., which are readily tarnished or oxidized, in contrast with the noble metals. In general, a metal of small value, as compared with gold or silver.
  • noun (Metal.) a very fusible alloy, usually consisting of bismuth with lead, tin, or cadmium.
  • noun (Chem.) the metallic elements not included in the groups of the alkalies, alkaline earths, or the earths; specifically, the heavy metals, as gold, mercury, platinum, lead, silver, etc.
  • noun (Chem.) the metallic elements of the alkali and alkaline earth groups, as sodium, lithium, calcium, magnesium, etc.; also, sometimes, the metals of the earths, as aluminium.
  • noun an alloy for sheathing and other purposes, consisting of about sixty per cent of copper, and forty of zinc. Sometimes a little lead is added. It is named from the inventor.
  • noun (Old Chem.) an alloy resembling brass, consisting of three parts of copper to one of zinc; -- also called Prince Rupert's metal.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Any of a number of chemical elements in the periodic table that form a metallic bond with other metal atoms; generally shiny, somewhat malleable and hard, often a conductor of heat and electricity.
  • noun Any material with similar physical properties, such as an alloy.
  • noun Crushed rock, stones etc. used to make a road.
  • noun heraldry A light tincture used in a coat of arms, specifically argent and or.
  • noun Molten glass that is to be blown or moulded to form objects
  • noun music A category of rock music encompassing a number of genres (including thrash metal, death metal, heavy metal, etc.) characterized by strong, fast drum-beats and distorted guitars.

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English, from Old French, from Latin metallum, from Greek metallon, mine, ore, metal.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English, from Old French metal ("metal"), from Latin metallum ("metal, mine, quarry, mineral"), from Ancient Greek μέταλλον (métallon, "mine, quarry, metal"), from μέταλλευειν (métalleuein, "to mine, quarry"), of unknown origin, but apparently related to μέταλλαν (métallan, "to seek after"), also of unknown origin.

Examples

  • a charge of a metal must rest upon a field that is of a colour or fur; or, contrariwise, that a charge of a colour must rest on a field that is of a metal or fur, -- that is, that _metal be not on metal, nor colour on colour_.

    The Handbook to English Heraldry

  • I. ii.313 (17,3) Thy honourable metal may be wrought/From what it is dispos'd] The best _metal_ or _temper_ may be worked into qualities contrary to its original constitution.

    Notes to Shakespeare, Volume III: The Tragedies

  • So ultimately the difference in metal is unimportant compared to basic shooting skill.

    Ignoring the Lead Ban

  • So ultimately the difference in metal is unimportant compared to basic shooting skill.

    Ignoring the Lead Ban

  • All the simple ideas that go to the complex one signified by the term metal, being nothing but what he before comprehended and signified by the name lead.

    An Essay Concerning Human Understanding

  • All the simple ideas that go to the complex one signified by the term metal, being nothing but what he before comprehended and signified by the name lead.

    God, Aids & Circumcision

  • Miss Siphax further explained that this was largely true of Egypt, where fine linen was combined in a most wonderful manner with what they term metal embroidery.

    The Woman's Era, Vol. 2

  • Miss Siphax further explained that this was largely true of Egypt, where fine linen was combined in a most wonderful manner with what they term metal embroidery.

    The Woman's Era Vol. 2 No. 3

  • Miss Siphax further explained that this was largely true of Egypt, where fine linen was combined in a most wonderful manner with what they term metal embroidery.

    New York

  • After all, the science of naval construction in metal is in its infancy, and will be liable to error and mishap for some time to came.

    Echoes of the Week

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