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[im-pyoo r-i-tee] /ɪmˈpyʊər ɪ ti/
noun, plural impurities for 2.
the quality or state of being impure.
Often, impurities. something that is or makes impure:
After the flood the authorities warned against impurities in the drinking water.
Origin of impurity
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English impurite < Latin impūritās. See impure, -ity
1. contamination, pollution, taint. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for impurities
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • All the evils and impurities and necessities of men come from the body.

    Phaedo Plato
  • (b) impurities may have used up some of the acid which cannot be recovered by charging.

  • (c) impurities in the electrolyte will also give it a milky appearance.

  • They are not acted upon by the electrolyte, or any of the impurities which may be found in the jar.

  • impurities of any nature should be removed as quickly as possible.

  • All the impurities which were in the sheet fall to the bottom of the tank.

    Electricity for Boys J. S. Zerbe
  • Who has not felt his impurities the more that he was in the presence of a sinless child?

    Watch Yourself Go By Al. G. Field
  • In the grease, not having been washed and containing all the impurities.

    Vegetable Dyes

    Ethel M. Mairet
British Dictionary definitions for impurities


noun (pl) -ties
the quality of being impure
an impure thing, constituent, or element: impurities in the water
(electronics) a small quantity of an element added to a pure semiconductor crystal to control its electrical conductivity See also acceptor (sense 2), donor (sense 5)
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
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Word Origin and History for impurities



mid-15c., "thing which makes or is impure;" c.1500, "fact or quality of being impure," from Middle French impurité, from impur (see impure). Related: Impurities.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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