Definition of physics in English:


plural noun

  • 1treated as singular The branch of science concerned with the nature and properties of matter and energy. The subject matter of physics includes mechanics, heat, light and other radiation, sound, electricity, magnetism, and the structure of atoms.

    • ‘In making these points, Edwards had the backing of the mechanistic and deterministic Newtonian physics of his day.’
    • ‘He began by stating that patterns of energy are nature's basic information system and that physics is about energy and matter.’
    • ‘The subjects being offered include biology, computing, physics, chemistry and mathematics.’
    • ‘One of the most contentious subjects in modern physics has been quantum mechanics.’
    • ‘One of the models and/or concepts used excessively in physics is the potential energy well.’
    1. 1.1 The physical properties and phenomena of something.
      ‘the physics of plasmas’
      • ‘The analogy of surface waves propagating on a body of water may be helpful in understanding the physics of sound propagation.’
      • ‘String theory is supposed to contain the physics of the quantum behavior of gravity.’
      • ‘At present this picture forms the focus of interest in the physics of elementary particles.’
      • ‘The second challenge is rooted in the physics of magnetized plasma flow.’
      • ‘It generates naturally within the model, tropical cyclones, as a result of the physics and the dynamics included in the model.’


Late 15th century (denoting natural science in general, especially the Aristotelian system): plural of obsolete physic ‘physical (thing’), suggested by Latin physica, Greek phusika ‘natural things’ from phusis ‘nature’.