Definition of quicksilver in English:

quicksilver

noun

  • 1The liquid metal mercury.

    • ‘It is the secret, the mystery of quicksilver, that a metal of such enormous density can yet remain liquid.’
    • ‘Kepler noted with satisfaction that it would be appropriate to correlate the sun with gold, the density of which is greater than that of quicksilver.’
    • ‘Quacks or quack salvers are named from quicksilver ointment peddlers who treated syphilis in the 16th century.’
    • ‘By increasing the amount of mercury allowed in coal-fired power plant emissions, he will ensure that every fish in every Great Lake contains unsafe levels of quicksilver.’
    • ‘Mercury has long been known also by the name quicksilver, because it is a silver liquid.’
    • ‘California exported nearly all its silver to Asian markets, as well as much of its quicksilver [mercury], which was a key new element in improving the extraction of precious metals from ore.’
    volatile, capricious, temperamental, excitable, fickle, changeable, unpredictable, variable, protean, mutable, erratic, quicksilver, inconstant, inconsistent, unstable, unsteady, fluctuating, ever-changing, kaleidoscopic, fluid, wavering, vacillating, moody, flighty, wayward, whimsical, giddy, impulsive
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    1. 1.1 Used in similes and metaphors to describe something that moves or changes very quickly, or that is difficult to hold or contain.
      ‘his mood changed like quicksilver’
      • ‘Although Merlis' prose remains as fluid as quicksilver, the narrative thrust progressively dwindles as Joel's quixotic journey nears its end.’
      • ‘The staff are pure class, the martini's pure quicksilver - immaculate.’
      • ‘Even if he danced at his best, he could not display the same quicksilver in jumps and polished tours, and his presence was less compelling and majestic.’
      • ‘Instead, more interest is shown in offshore locales like Bermuda, Ireland, Switzerland or Hong Kong, where governments work hard to make themselves attractive to quicksilver capital.’
      • ‘Much depends on the form of Ajax's quicksilver striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, so Swedes will hope that he actually makes it to Portugal.’
      • ‘The mind goes like quicksilver to the simple solution to a case and it would have seemed to me that the issue in this case is a very simple one.’
      • ‘They view political power as a quicksilver that is always everywhere at once in society, and therefore nowhere in particular.’
      • ‘What she made present to the audience was a quicksilver mind as well as a radiant body.’
      • ‘Only the lizards seemed charmed by the sun, sliding like quicksilver among the crannies in the walls.’
      • ‘And then, like quicksilver, the New York Times editor who vowed to stay was gone.’
      • ‘The piano bench remains unoccupied as the instrument's keys appear to be struck by the quicksilver fingers of four absent hands - perhaps those of Isenstein and her sidekick.’
      • ‘Drop your guard for a moment, and your hard-won gains slip like quicksilver from your grasp, leaving a muscle group to lag behind others or your rock-hard density to melt.’
      • ‘The music of Chopin is like quicksilver to the ear; Beethoven is moonlight and butterflies for the soul.’
      • ‘Those environmentally-conscious Australians have extracted the chlorine from this quicksilver Olympic pool, so one of the most drug - scarred sports has even less chance of washing itself clean.’
      • ‘And yet one reason that Picasso became an emblematic artist was that his chaotic inner life was a kind of cultural quicksilver, spilling outward to reflect larger social themes.’
      • ‘Yao Wei - a new ensemble member from Shanghai - entered like a quicksilver breeze, tenuously anchored to earth by beautifully arched feet.’
      • ‘Ed Blackwell plays it straight for the most part, with only occasional flashes of the quicksilver rhythmic trickery he excelled at.’
      • ‘Money was like quicksilver - hard to get a hold of and harder yet to keep in hand.’
      • ‘Her quicksilver changes of intent, complex multiple qualities, polyrhythms, and opposing body parts warred with Anderson's weeping strings to create a moving picture of grief.’
      • ‘His enthusiasm was as legendary as his quicksilver movement from one scientific interest to another.’
      changeable, changing, variable, varying, inconstant, inconsistent, ever-changing, erratic, unstable, unsteady, shifting, fluid, undependable, unreliable, uncertain, unpredictable, mercurial, quicksilver, kaleidoscopic, chameleon-like
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Pronunciation:

quicksilver

/ˈkwikˌsilvər/