Abstract Two recent theories of nuclear quadrupolar relaxation rates W 1 Q in liquid metals are reviewed. One is the classical motion approach, where motions of the ions in a liquid metal are accounted for by the introduction of the two and three particle correlation function in terms of the translational and diffusive motions. The second and perhaps more rigorous approach starts out with the dynamic interference function of the van Hove-type. These two theories have been utilized to investigate the temperature dependence of W 1 q in liquid Ga 69, In 115, and Hg 201, and calculated results are compared with the recent experimental measurements. It has been found that for the temperature range studied, the calculated W 1 q changed in agreement with the experimental results when the dynamic theory (Warren theory) was used, but some disagreement occurs with the classical theory (Sholl theory). Two main points emerge from the present study. One is that in these liquid metals the temperature dependence of W 1 q mostly comes from the translational, diffusive motion of the single ion rather than the change in the collective motion or the structure itself. Second, the theory worked out in the momentum space can account for the temperature dependence better than the corresponding theory worked out in real space by avoiding some obvious assumptions.