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capillarity

[kap-uh-lar-i-tee]
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noun
  1. Also called capillary action, capillary attraction. Physics. a manifestation of surface tension by which the portion of the surface of a liquid coming in contact with a solid is elevated or depressed, depending on the adhesive or cohesive properties of the liquid.

Origin of capillarity

First recorded in 1820–30; capillary + -ty2
Related formsnon·cap·il·lar·i·ty, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for capillary-action

capillarity

noun
  1. a phenomenon caused by surface tension and resulting in the distortion, elevation, or depression of the surface of a liquid in contact with a solidAlso called: capillary action
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for capillary-action

capillarity

n.

1806, from French capillarité, from Latin capillaris (see capillary).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

capillary-action in Medicine

capillarity

(kăp′ə-lărĭ-tē)
n.
  1. The interaction between contacting surfaces of a liquid and a solid that distorts the liquid surface from a planar shape.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.