What physical characteristic distinguishes a fluid from a solid?
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Here we need to distinguish physical characteristics between fluids and solids.
Matter generally exists in different forms like solid, liquid and gaseous states and are referred as the different states of matter.
Solids have definite shape and volume, whereas the liquids has a definite volume and it takes the shape of the container in which they are placed. In case of gases, neither they possess definite shape nor they have specific volume.