- a body, as a piece of iron or steel, that possesses the property of attracting certain substances, as iron.
- a lodestone.
- a thing or person that attracts: The park was a magnet for pickpockets and muggers.
Origin of magnet
- variant of magneto- before some vowels: magneton.
Examples from the Web for magnet
Private schools have a way of being a magnet for scandals for the creepy, inappropriate adults who run them.Headmasters Behaving Badly
November 29, 2014
“New York kind of pulled me here like a magnet,” said Swift.Jon Stewart: Taylor Swift ‘Smart Choice’ For NYC’s Global Welcome Ambassador
November 8, 2014
Anything in your gut sticks to the surface of charcoal like a magnet and gets carried out through a bowel movement.Could Eating Charcoal Help You Detox?
September 20, 2014
I felt like I wanted to just immerse myself in all things New York, and the Robert Moses story was like a magnet for me.‘The Power Broker’ Turns 40: How Robert Caro Wrote a Masterpiece
September 16, 2014
Gallup, New Mexico, was called “Drunk City, U.S.A” for its reputation as a magnet for drunks.Delhi in Crisis: How Corruption Rotted a Great Capital
May 14, 2014
That is the true ideal; a great nation ought not to be a hammer, but a magnet.Alarms and Discursions
G. K. Chesterton
Then he saw that the magnet was fast to the side of the flier, near the stern.Salvage in Space
John Stewart Williamson
No knife, no rocket pistol, no line with magnet for securing oneself to a hull.Satellite System
Horace Brown Fyfe
Solange was smiling at him, a smile that drew him like a magnet.Louisiana Lou
William West Winter
We learn first to play with it academically, as the magnet was once a toy.Essays, First Series
Ralph Waldo Emerson
- a body that can attract certain substances, such as iron or steel, as a result of a magnetic field; a piece of ferromagnetic substanceSee also electromagnet
- a person or thing that exerts a great attraction
Word Origin and History for magnet
mid-15c. (earlier magnes, late 14c.), from Old French magnete "magnetite, magnet, lodestone," and directly from Latin magnetum (nominative magnes) "lodestone," from Greek ho Magnes lithos "the Magnesian stone," from Magnesia, region in Thessaly where magnetized ore was obtained. Figurative use from 1650s. It has spread from Latin to most Western European languages (cf. German and Danish magnet, Dutch magneet, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese magnete), but it was superseded in French by aimant. Also cf. magnesia. Chick magnet attested from 1989.
- A material or object that produces a magnetic field. Lodestones are natural magnets, though many materials, especially metals, can be made into magnets by exposing them to a magnetic field. See also electromagnet ferromagnetism magnetic pole. See Note at magnetism.
An object that attracts iron and some other materials. Magnets are said to generate a magnetic field around themselves. Every magnet has two poles, called the north and south poles. Magnetic poles exert forces on each other in such a way that like poles repel and unlike poles attract each other. A compass is a small magnet that is affected by the magnetic field of the Earth in such a way that it points to a magnetic pole of the Earth. (See magnetic field and magnetism.)