• synonyms


[mee-zon, ‐son, mez-on, mes‐]
  1. Physics. any hadron, or strongly interacting particle, other than a baryon. Mesons are bosons, having spins of 0, 1, 2, …, and, unlike baryons, do not obey a conservation law.
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Compare quark model.

Origin of meson

1935–40; mes- + on1; cf. mesotron
Related formsme·son·ic, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for meson

Historical Examples of meson

  • What about de Selva's place, the Radziwill hacienda, the Meson house?

    When the Owl Cries

    Paul Bartlett

  • As it was now darkening we hurried to the meson of the village.

  • The cottage has left no trace behind, the walls of the meson are a mass of ruins, and the courtyard deserted.

  • Further studies of the interactions of π mesons are made in the meson cave.

    LRL Accelerators

    Lawrence Radiation Laboratory

  • Skinny told me, but it was something about meson flow and stuff like that that I didn't understand.

British Dictionary definitions for meson


  1. any of a group of elementary particles, such as a pion or kaon, that usually has a rest mass between those of an electron and a proton, and an integral spin. They are responsible for the force between nucleons in the atomic nucleusFormer name: mesotron See also muon
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Derived Formsmesonic or mesic, adjective

Word Origin for meson

C20: from meso- + -on
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

Word Origin and History for meson


subatomic particle, 1939, from Greek mesos "middle" (see medial (adj.)) + subatomic particle suffix -on. Earlier mesotron (1938). So called for being intermediate in mass between protons and electrons.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

meson in Science


[mĕzŏn′, mĕs-, mēzŏn′, -sŏn′]
  1. Any of a family of subatomic particles that are composed of a quark and an antiquark. Their masses are generally intermediate between leptons and baryons, and they can have positive, negative, or neutral charge. Mesons form a subclass of hadrons and include the kaon, pion and J/psi particles. Mesons were originally believed to be the particles that mediated the strong nuclear force, but it has since been shown that the gluon mediates this force. See Table at subatomic particle.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

meson in Culture


[(mez-on, may-zon)]

An elementary particle in the atomic nucleus.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.