a component or constituent of a whole or one of the parts into which a whole may be resolved by analysis: Bricks and mortar are elements of every masonry wall.
Chemistry. one of a class of substances that cannot be separated into simpler substances by chemical means. See also chart under periodic table.
a natural habitat, sphere of activity, environment, etc.: to be in one's element; Water is the element of fish.
elements. atmospheric agencies or forces; weather: a ruddy complexion from exposure to the elements. the rudimentary principles of an art, science, etc.: the elements of grammar. the bread and wine of the Eucharistic service.
any group of people singled out within a larger group by identifiable behavior patterns, common interests, ethnic similarities, etc.: He worried that the protest rally would attract the radical element.