The Compact Muon Solenoid experiment at the CERN Large Hadron Collider will study protonproton collisions at unprecedented energies and luminosities. In this article we providefi rst a brief general introduction to particle physics. We then explain what CERN is. Thenwe describe the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, the most powerful particle acceleratorever built. Finally we describe the Compact Muon Solenoid experiment, its physics goals,construction details, and current status.