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From French déplacement. Morphologically displace +‎ -ment.


  • IPA(key): /dɪsˈpleɪsmɪnt/, /dɪzˈpleɪsmənt/
    • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪsmənt


displacement (plural displacements)

  1. The act of displacing, or the state of being displaced; a putting out of place.
    • 1793, Alexander Hamilton, Loans [] :
      Unnecessary displacement of funds.
    • 1837, William Whewell, History of the Inductive Sciences:
      The displacement of the sun by parallax.
  2. The weight of a ship or other floating vessel, traditionally measured or calculated by finding the volume of the vessel below the waterline when afloat, the weight of the displaced liquid being equal to that of the whole displacing body.
  3. (chemistry) The process of extracting soluble substances from organic material and the like, whereby a quantity of saturated solvent is displaced, or removed, for another quantity of the solvent.
  4. (fencing) Moving the target to avoid an attack; dodging.
  5. (physics) A vector quantity which denotes distance with a directional component.
  6. (grammar) The capability of a communication system to refer to things that are not present (that existed or will exist at another time, or that exist at another location).
  7. (psychology) The transfer of feelings or emotions from their intended recipient to another object or person.
  8. (fluid mechanics) The amount of liquid displaced by a submerged object.
  9. (electricity) The transfer of electricity along tubes of induction and thereby polarizing a dielectric.

Derived terms[edit]

Compound words and expressions


Further reading[edit]

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for “displacement”, in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, Springfield, Mass.: G. & C. Merriam, 1913, →OCLC.)