noun, plural mer·cu·ries.
Origin of mercury
Examples from the Web for mercury
Contemporary Examples of mercury
He was demoted at the Mercury News, and left the paper in 1997.Jeremy Renner Opens Up About Marriage, His Problems with the Media, and the Future of Hawk-Eye
September 29, 2014
That means most of these planets orbit closer than Mercury does to the Sun.The Exoplanet That Wasn’t There
Matthew R. Francis
July 6, 2014
Kutler, the Mercury lobbyist, accompanied Klyuyev in meetings he held in Washington last year, according to the piece.Ukraine’s D.C. Lobbyists in Disarray as Dictator Flees
February 25, 2014
He went so far as to have rivers of mercury set up in his tomb, along with his famous thousand-soldier strong Terracotta Army.This Exhibit Could Kill You: The Museum of Natural History Takes on Poison
January 8, 2014
“Harry Belafonte told me I had mercury poisoning,” Simmons confided.Russell Simmons Goes Hollywood
October 4, 2013
Historical Examples of mercury
Slept in snow-drift that night in wet clothes, mercury 40 below.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
The mercury in the barometer was falling, and so was the rain.
He was the Ulysses of pirates, the beloved not only of Mercury, but of Minerva.Howard Pyle's Book of Pirates
He states that they pierced a plank, an inch thick, with a bullet made of mercury.The Field of Ice
What tricks and legerdemains with which Mercury does not cloak his thefts?The Praise of Folly
noun plural -ries
Word Origin for mercury
"the Roman god Mercury," mid-12c., from Latin Mercurius "Mercury," originally a god of tradesmen and thieves, from merx "merchandise" (see market (n.)); or perhaps [Klein, Tucker] from Etruscan and influenced by merx. Later he was associated with Greek Hermes. The planet closest to the sun so called in classical Latin (late 14c. in English). A hypothetical inhabitant of the planet was a Mercurean (1855) or a Mercurian (1868). For the metallic element, see mercury.
silver-white fluid metallic element, late 14c., from Medieval Latin mercurius, from Latin Mercurius (see Mercury). Prepared from cinnabar, it was one of the seven metals (bodies terrestrial) known to the ancients, which were coupled in astrology and alchemy with the seven known heavenly bodies. This one probably so associated for its mobility. The others were Sun/gold, Moon/silver, Mars/iron, Saturn/lead, Jupiter/tin, Venus/copper. The Greek name for it was hydrargyros "liquid silver," which gives the element its symbol, Hg. Cf. quicksilver.
n. Symbol Hg
Word History: Like a few other elements, mercury has a chemical symbol, Hg, that bears no resemblance to its name. This is because Hg is an abbreviation of the Latin name of the element, which was hydrargium. This word in turn was taken over from Greek, where it literally meant water-silver. With this name the Greeks were referring to the fact that mercury is a silvery liquid at room temperature, rather than a solid like other metals. Similarly, an older English name for this element is quicksilver, which means living silver, referring to its ability to move like a living thing. (The word quick used to mean alive, as in the Biblical phrase the quick and the dead.) The name mercury refers to the fact that the element flows about quickly: the name comes from the Roman god Mercury, who was the swift-footed messenger of the gods.
The Roman name of Hermes, the messenger of the Greek and Roman gods.