Define Capillarity

The property of surface tension gives rise to an interesting phenomenon called capillarity. When a capillary tube is dipped in water, the water rises up in the tube. The level of water in the tube is above the free surface of water in the beaker (capillary rise). When a capillary tube is dipped in mercury, mercury also rises in the tube.


But the level of mercury is depressed below the free surface of mercury in the beaker (capillary fall). The rise of a liquid in a capillary tube is known as capillarity. The height h in Figure indicates the capillary rise (for water) or capillary fall (for mercury).