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[ih-la-stis-i-tee, ee-la-stis-] /ɪ læˈstɪs ɪ ti, ˌi læˈstɪs-/
the state or quality of being elastic.
flexibility; resilience; adaptability:
a statement with a great elasticity of meaning.
buoyancy; ability to resist or overcome depression.
Physics. the property of a substance that enables it to change its length, volume, or shape in direct response to a force effecting such a change and to recover its original form upon the removal of the force.
Origin of elasticity
First recorded in 1655-65; elastic + -ity
Related forms
nonelasticity, noun
unelasticity, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for elasticity
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • To a less extent the legs are benefited and the entire muscular system gains in elasticity.

    For the Honor of the School Ralph Henry Barbour
  • Crude gum, however, is lacking both in strength and elasticity.

    Commercial Geography Jacques W. Redway
  • The different kinds of wood naturally differ in their strength and elasticity.

    Studies of Trees Jacob Joshua Levison
  • And now the sky looked brighter; there seemed to be an elasticity in the air.

    Diamond Dyke George Manville Fenn
  • Jack did his best to amuse him, and with the elasticity of childhood, he began to recover his usual vivacity.

    In League with Israel Annie F. Johnston
  • In this case it is not the gravity but the elasticity of the water that comes into play.

  • WITH the elasticity of youth the boys slept away their fatigue during the night, but woke up the next morning ravenously hungry.

British Dictionary definitions for elasticity


/ɪlæˈstɪsɪtɪ; ˌiːlæ-/
the property of a body or substance that enables it to resume its original shape or size when a distorting force is removed See also elastic limit
the state or quality of being elastic; flexibility or buoyancy
a measure of the sensitivity of demand for goods or services to changes in price or other marketing variables, such as advertising
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
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Word Origin and History for elasticity

1660s; see elastic + -ity.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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elasticity in Medicine

elasticity e·las·tic·i·ty (ĭ-lā-stĭs'ĭ-tē, ē'lā-)

  1. The condition or property of being elastic; flexibility.

  2. The property of returning to an initial form or state following deformation.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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elasticity in Science
The ability of a solid to return to its original shape or form after being subject to strain. Most solid materials display elasticity, up to a load point called the elastic limit; loads higher than this limit cause permanent deformation of the material. See also Hooke's law.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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elasticity in Culture

elasticity definition

A shift in either demand or supply of a good or service depending on its price. Demand is said to be elastic when it responds quickly to changes in prices, and inelastic when it responds sluggishly.

elasticity definition

The property of a material that allows it to return to its original shape after having been deformed and to exert a force while deformed. (See stress.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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