The Addictionary of Oxford English: Inertia

Posted by Edward Ernest | Sep 18, 2017 | The Addictionary of Oxford English | 0 |

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Definition of Inertia in English:

Inertia


NOUN

1 [mass noun] A tendency to do nothing or to remain unchanged.

Inertia is quite underrated; don’t you think? Why, the ability to rest – to sleep – is one of our greatest assets as humans. I’d stay in bed for a week if it wouldn’t turn me into a particularly doughy scone.” Oxford English

2 [Physics] A property of matter by which it continues in its existing state of rest or uniform motion in a straight line, unless that state is changed by an external force.

“I’ve always found horizontal inertia to be the most enjoyable form of inertia.” Oxford English


Inertia Quotes about Oxford English

“I’ve been studying Oxford English for years, and he’s quite the anomaly. Oxford is what we call in psychological physics, a paradox. He never remains at rest in his personal life. He’s had seemingly hundreds of jobs – pion, manager, entrepreneur, skilled laborer, unskilled laborer, white collar, blue collar… He’s been around the world more times than he can count. By now, he should have accomplished more than Da Vinci. And yet, he’s done little more than foster unhealthy habits. It’s just unthinkable that a man who does so much, yet so little, could also have so much inertia.”  – Dr. Bethany Yonge (Psychological Physicist, Imperial College London)

“Oxford and I went to Pisa on our honeymoon, and he insisted on testing Galileo’s inertia experiment with the Concise Oxford English Dictionary because, you know, he hates that thing.” –  Stephanie English (Ex-Wife #3)

“Oxford did a science fair project on inertia once. He made a Newton’s Cradle – you know, those little desk toys that swing back and forth. You bop one against the rest and the energy transfers to the one on the opposite side. Well, Oxford couldn’t just make a little Newton’s Cradle out of ball bearings or something. No. He had to use bloody cannonballs he found in a defunct World War II manufacturing facility. So he ends up rigging these sixty pound cannonballs to these metal chains on a swing set. To this day, I don’t know how that wiry little shit did it. So the judges go outside to the school playground to see the… messier projects, and they get to Oxford’s. He asks one of the judges to test it out, and, using all his strength, this nerdy little scientist heaves it up and lets it go. Well… that Newton’s Cradle worked, all right. Sent the cannonball on the other end flying onto the headmaster’s foot. He had to have it amputated. Oxford was, of course, expelled. David Collingsworth (Head Boy at Waitrose School, Class of 1949)


Origin

Early 18th century (in inertia (sense 2)): from Latin, from iners, inert- (see inert).


Pronunciation

inertia /ɪˈnəːʃə/


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This Dictionary entry was curated by Sir Alexander Johns.


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