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mercurial

[ mer-kyoor-ee-uhl ]
/ mərˈkyʊər i əl /
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See synonyms for: mercurial / mercurialness on Thesaurus.com

adjective
changeable; volatile; fickle; flighty; erratic: a mercurial nature.
animated; lively; sprightly; quick-witted.
pertaining to, containing, or caused by the metal mercury.
(initial capital letter) of or relating to the god Mercury.
(initial capital letter) of or relating to the planet Mercury.
noun
Pharmacology. a preparation of mercury used as a drug.
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Origin of mercurial

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English, from Latin mercuriālis “of or pertaining to the god or planet Mercury”; see origin at mercury, -al1

OTHER WORDS FROM mercurial

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

How to use mercurial in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for mercurial

mercurial
/ (mɜːˈkjʊərɪəl) /

adjective
of, like, containing, or relating to mercury
volatile; livelya mercurial temperament
(sometimes capital) of, like, or relating to the god or the planet Mercury
noun
med any salt of mercury for use as a medicine

Derived forms of mercurial

mercurially, adverbmercurialness or mercuriality, noun

Word Origin for mercurial

C14: from Latin mercuriālis
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

Medical definitions for mercurial

mercurial
[ mər-kyurē-əl ]

adj.
Containing or caused by the action of the element mercury.
n.
A pharmacological or chemical preparation containing mercury.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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