Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[ih-lek-trik] /ɪˈlɛk trɪk/
pertaining to, derived from, produced by, or involving electricity:
an electric shock.
producing, transmitting, or operated by electric currents:
an electric bell; electric cord.
electrifying; thrilling; exciting; stirring:
The atmosphere was electric with excitement.
  1. producing sound by electrical or electronic means:
    an electric piano.
  2. equipped with connections to an amplifier-loudspeaker system:
    an electric violin.
  1. an electric locomotive.
  2. Informal. a railroad operated by electricity.
residential users of gas and electric.
something, as an appliance, vehicle, or toy, operated by electricity.
Archaic. a substance that is a nonconductor of electricity, as glass or amber, used to store or to excite an electric charge.
Origin of electric
1640-50; < New Latin electricus, equivalent to Latin ēlectr(um) amber (see electrum) + -icus -ic
Related forms
nonelectric, adjective, noun
preelectric, adjective
unelectric, adjective
3. spirited, rousing, dynamic.
3. dull, uninspired, prosaic. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for electric
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The effect of her words was like an electric shock to the man.

    Jolly Sally Pendleton Laura Jean Libbey
  • He flashed on the electric light and saw that the hour was a little after eleven.

    Jack O' Judgment Edgar Wallace
  • In addition it has a good telephone and electric lighting system.

    Haiti J. Dryden Kuser
  • He fumbled about for the electric switch, found it and flooded the room with light.

    Jack O' Judgment Edgar Wallace
  • They fired spirits and lighted candles with the electric spark.

    Inventors Philip Gengembre Hubert
British Dictionary definitions for electric


of, derived from, produced by, producing, transmitting, or powered by electricity: electric current, an electric cord, an electric blanket, an electric fence, an electric fire
(of a musical instrument) amplified electronically: an electric guitar, an electric mandolin
very tense or exciting; emotionally charged: an electric atmosphere
(informal) an electric train, car, etc
(Brit, informal) electricity or electrical power
(pl) an electric circuit or electric appliances
Word Origin
C17: from New Latin electricus amber-like (because friction causes amber to become charged), from Latin ēlectrum amber, from Greek ēlektron, of obscure origin
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for electric

1640s, first used in English by physician Sir Thomas Browne (1605-1682), apparently coined as Modern Latin electricus (literally "resembling amber") by English physicist William Gilbert (1540-1603) in treatise "De Magnete" (1600), from Latin electrum "amber," from Greek elektron "amber" (Homer, Hesiod, Herodotus), also "pale gold" (a compound of 1 part silver to 4 of gold); of unknown origin.

Originally the word described substances which, like amber, attract other substances when rubbed. Meaning "charged with electricity" is from 1670s; the physical force so called because it first was generated by rubbing amber. In many modern instances, the word is short for electrical. Figurative sense is attested by 1793. Electric toothbrush first recorded 1936; electric typewriter 1958.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
electric in Science
electric (ĭ-lěk'trĭk) also electrical
Relating to or operated by electricity. Compare electronic.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for electric

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for electric

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for electric