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benzene

[ben-zeen, ben-zeen]
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noun Chemistry.
  1. a colorless, volatile, flammable, toxic, slightly water-soluble, liquid, aromatic compound, C6H6, obtained chiefly from coal tar: used in the manufacture of commercial and medicinal chemicals, dyes, and as a solvent for resins, fats, or the like.
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Origin of benzene

First recorded in 1825–35; benz(oic acid) + -ene
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for benzene

benzene

noun
  1. a colourless flammable toxic aromatic liquid used in the manufacture of styrene, phenol, etc, as a solvent for fats, resins, etc, and as an insecticide. Formula: C 6 H 6See also benzene ring
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for benzene

n.

1835, benzine, altered from German Benzin, coined in 1833 by German chemist Eilhardt Mitscherlich (1794-1863) from Benz(oesäure) "benzoic acid" + -ene (German -in), hydrocarbon suffix. Mitscherlich obtained it from a distillation of benzoic acid, obtained from benzoin. The form benzene dates from 1872 in English. In 19c. it also sometimes was called benzol. Faraday was first to discover the compound (in fish oil) and called it bicarburet of hydrogen.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

benzene in Medicine

benzene

(bĕnzēn′, bĕn-zēn)
n.
  1. A clear, colorless, highly refractive flammable liquid derived from petroleum and used in or to manufacture a wide variety of chemical products, including DDT, insecticides, and motor fuels.benzine
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

benzene in Science

benzene

[bĕnzēn′]
  1. A colorless flammable liquid derived from petroleum. Benzene is used to make detergents, insecticides, motor fuels, and many other chemical products. Chemical formula: C6H6. See more at benzene ring.
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Related formsbenzyl adjective
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.