a slender magnetized steel rod that, when adjusted to swing in a horizontal plane, as in a compass, indicates the direction of the earth's magnetic fields or the approximate position of north and south.
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- magnetic meridian,
- magnetic mine,
- magnetic mirror,
- magnetic moment,
- magnetic monopole,
- magnetic north,
- magnetic particle inspection,
- magnetic permeability,
- magnetic pick-up,
- magnetic pickup
Origin of magnetic needle
First recorded in 1840–50
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Examples from the Web for magnetic needle
Theory of the diurnal variation of the magnetic-needle, illustrated by experiments.
FLY, or Compass-card, placed on the magnetic-needle and supported by a pin, whereon it turns freely.The Sailor's Word-Book|William Henry Smyth
a slender magnetized rod used in certain instruments, such as the magnetic compass, for indicating the direction of a magnetic field
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