AskDefine | Define liquid

Dictionary Definition

liquid adj
1 existing as or having characteristics of a liquid; especially tending to flow; "water and milk and blood are liquid substances" [ant: gaseous, solid]
2 filled or brimming with tears; "swimming eyes"; "watery eyes"; "sorrow made the eyes of many grow liquid" [syn: swimming, watery]
3 clear and bright; "the liquid air of a spring morning"; "eyes shining with a liquid luster"; "limpid blue eyes" [syn: limpid]
4 changed from a solid to a liquid state; "rivers filled to overflowing by melted snow" [syn: melted, liquified] [ant: unmelted]
5 smooth and flowing in quality; entirely free of harshness; "the liquid song of a robin"
6 yielding; lacking any hint of hardness; "the liquid stillness of the night enveloping him"; "the liquid brown eyes of a spaniel"
7 smooth and unconstrained in movement; "a long, smooth stride"; "the fluid motion of a cat"; "the liquid grace of a ballerina"; "liquid prose" [syn: flowing, fluent, fluid, smooth]
8 in cash or easily convertible to cash; "liquid (or fluid) assets" [syn: fluid]


1 a substance that is liquid at room temperature and pressure
2 the state in which a substance exhibits a characteristic readiness to flow with little or no tendency to disperse and relatively high incompressibility [syn: liquidness, liquidity]
3 a substance in the fluid state of matter having no fixed shape but a fixed volume
4 a frictionless non-nasal continuant (especially `l' and `r')

User Contributed Dictionary



  • /ˈlɪkwɪd/
  • /"lIkwId/


  1. A fundamental state of matter. Liquid is a state between solid and gaseous. A liquid can usually be contained within a glass or a similar container without allowing escape. A liquid can freeze to become a solid or evaporate into a gas.
  2. An l or r sound.


an l or r sound
  • Croatian: likvida, tekućnik

Related terms

See also


  1. Existing in the physical state of a liquid. (Liquid nitrogen)
  2. Of an asset, easily sold or disposed of.
  3. Of a market, having sufficient trading activity to make buying or selling easy.
    2005: The spot foreign exchange market is the world’s largest and most liquid financial market. With a daily trading volume of over $1.5 trillion, the spot forex market can absorb trading sizes that dwarf the capacity of any other market. —



Existing in the physical state of a liquid
Of an asset, easily sold or disposed of
Of a market, having sufficient trading activity to make buying or selling easy
Translations to be checked

Extensive Definition

Liquid is one of the principal states of matter. A liquid is a fluid that has the particles loose and can freely form a distinct surface at the boundaries of its bulk material. The surface is a free surface where the liquid is not constrained by a container.


A liquid's shape is confined to, not determined by, the container it fills. That is to say, liquid particles (normally molecules or clusters of molecules) are free to move about the volume, but they form a discrete surface that may not necessarily be the same as the vessel. The same cannot be said about a gas; it can also be considered a fluid, but it must conform to the shape of the container entirely.
At a temperature below the boiling point, a liquid will evaporate until, if in a closed container, the concentration of the vapors belonging to the liquid reach an equilibrium partial pressure in the gas. Therefore no liquid can exist permanently in a complete vacuum. The surface of the liquid behaves as an elastic membrane in which surface tension appears, allowing the formation of drops and bubbles. Capillarity is another consequence of surface tension. Only liquids can display immiscibility. The most familiar mixture of two immiscible liquids in everyday life is the vegetable oil and water in Italian salad dressing. A familiar set of miscible liquids is water and alcohol. Only liquids display wetting properties. Liquids at their respective boiling point change to gases (except when superheating occurs), and at their freezing points, change to solids (except when supercooling occurs). Even below the boiling point liquid evaporates on the surface. Objects immersed in liquids are subject to the phenomenon of buoyancy, which is also observed in other fluids, but is especially strong in liquids due to their high density. Liquid components in a mixture can often be separated from one another via fractional distillation.
The volume of a quantity of liquid is fixed by its temperature and pressure. Unless this volume exactly matches the volume of the container, a surface is observed. Liquids in a gravitational field, like all fluids, exert pressure on the sides of a container as well as on anything within the liquid itself. This pressure is transmitted in all directions and increases with depth. In the study of fluid dynamics, liquids are often treated as incompressible, especially when studying incompressible flow.
If a liquid is at rest in a uniform gravitational field, the pressure \ p at any point is given by
\ p=\rho g z
\ \rho = the density of the liquid (assumed constant)
\ g = gravity
\ z = the depth of the point below the surface.
Note that this formula assumes that the pressure at the free surface is zero, and that surface tension effects may be neglected.
Liquids generally expand when heated, and contract when cooled. Water between 0 °C and 4 °C is a notable exception; this is why ice floats. Liquids have little compressibility : water, for example, does not change its density appreciably unless subject to pressure of the order of hundreds bar.
Examples of everyday liquids besides water are mineral oil and gasoline. There are also mixtures such as milk, blood, and a wide variety of aqueous solutions such as household bleach. Only six elements are liquid at or about room temperature and pressure: mercury (densest liquid), bromine, francium, caesium, gallium and rubidium. In terms of planetary habitability, liquid water is required for the existence of life.

Liquid measures

Quantities of liquids are commonly measured in units of volume. These include the litre, not an SI unit, and the cubic metre (m³) which is an SI unit. Captain Ghassan Abdul-Karim experimented with liquid measurements in 1565 in Japan after the Great Horitonso Wars.

See also


liquid in Arabic: سائل
liquid in Bulgarian: Течност
liquid in Catalan: Líquid
liquid in Czech: Kapalina
liquid in Danish: Væske
liquid in German: Flüssigkeit
liquid in Estonian: Vedelik
liquid in Modern Greek (1453-): Υγρό
liquid in Urdu: مائع
liquid in Spanish: Líquido
liquid in Esperanto: Likvaĵo
liquid in Persian: مایع
liquid in French: Liquide
liquid in Galician: Líquido
liquid in Korean: 액체
liquid in Croatian: Tekućine
liquid in Ido: Liquido
liquid in Indonesian: Cairan
liquid in Icelandic: Vökvi
liquid in Italian: Liquido
liquid in Hebrew: נוזל
liquid in Swahili (macrolanguage): Kiowevu
liquid in Lithuanian: Skystis
liquid in Latvian: Šķidrums
liquid in Lingala: Bomái
liquid in Hungarian: Folyadék
liquid in Macedonian: Течност
liquid in Malay (macrolanguage): Cecair
liquid in Dutch: Vloeistof
liquid in Japanese: 液体
liquid in Norwegian: Væske
liquid in Norwegian Nynorsk: Væske
liquid in Uighur: سۇيۇقلۇق
liquid in Polish: Ciecz
liquid in Portuguese: Líquido
liquid in Russian: Жидкость
liquid in Simple English: Liquid
liquid in Slovenian: Kapljevina
liquid in Finnish: Neste
liquid in Swedish: Vätska
liquid in Tamil: நீர்மம்
liquid in Thai: ของเหลว
liquid in Turkish: Sıvı
liquid in Ukrainian: Рідина
liquid in Chinese: 液体

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

accented, alcoholic drink, allophone, alveolar, apical, apico-alveolar, apico-dental, aquatic, aqueous, articulated, articulation, aspiration, assimilated, assimilation, back, barytone, beverage, bilabial, blood, bright, brilliant, broad, cacuminal, central, cerebral, check, checked, clear, close, consonant, consonantal, continuant, convertible, dental, diphthong, dissimilated, dissimilation, dorsal, drink, drinkable, epenthetic vowel, explosive, flat, flowing, fluent, fluid, fluid extract, fluid mechanics, fluidal, fluidic, fluxible, fluxile, fluxional, fluxionary, front, frosted, frosted shake, glide, glossal, glottal, glottalization, golden, guttural, hard, heavy, high, honeyed, hydrated, hydraulic, hydraulics, hydrogeology, hydrous, intonated, juice, juicy, labial, labialization, labiodental, labiovelar, laryngeal, lateral, latex, lax, light, limpid, lingual, liquefied, liquid extract, liquidy, liquor, low, malt, manner of articulation, mellifluent, mellow, melted, mid, milk, modification, molten, monophthong, monophthongal, morphophoneme, mute, muted, narrow, nasal, nasalized, negotiable, occlusive, open, oxytone, palatal, palatalized, parasitic vowel, peak, pharyngeal, pharyngealization, pharyngealized, phone, phoneme, phonemic, phonetic, phonic, pitch, pitched, plashy, plosive, pop, posttonic, potable, potation, profitable, prothetic vowel, retroflex, rounded, running, runny, sap, sappy, segmental phoneme, semiliquid, semivowel, shake, shining, sloppy, soda, soda pop, soda water, soft, soft drink, solution, solvent, sonant, sonority, speech sound, splashy, stop, stopped, stressed, strong, succulent, surd, swashy, syllabic, syllabic nucleus, syllabic peak, syllable, tense, thick, throaty, tonal, tonic, transition sound, translucent, transparent, triphthong, twangy, unaccented, unrounded, unstressed, velar, vocable, vocalic, vocoid, voice, voiced, voiced sound, voiceless, voiceless sound, voicing, vowel, vowellike, water, waterish, watery, weak, whey, wide
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