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zinc

[zingk]
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noun
  1. Chemistry. a ductile, bluish-white metallic element: used in making galvanized iron, brass, and other alloys, and as an element in voltaic cells. Symbol: Zn; atomic weight: 65.37; atomic number: 30; specific gravity: 7.14 at 20°C.
  2. a piece of this metal used as an element in a voltaic cell.
verb (used with object), zincked or zinced [zingkt] /zɪŋkt/, zinck·ing or zinc·ing [zing-king] /ˈzɪŋ kɪŋ/.
  1. to coat or cover with zinc.

Origin of zinc

1635–45; < German Zink, perhaps derivative of Zinke(n) prong, tine, from the spikelike form it takes in a furnace
Related formszinck·y, zinc·y, zink·y, adjectivezinc·oid, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for zinc

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The roof of the great porch of the kitchen-door was covered with zinc.

    The Dream

    Emile Zola

  • The letters were then transferred to the zinc by pressure, so as to be printed from.

  • It so happened that on that day he was to fix the last sheets of zinc.

    L'Assommoir

    Emile Zola

  • Then Gervaise understood that he fancied he was on a roof, laying down sheets of zinc.

    L'Assommoir

    Emile Zola

  • Bending over his bench, he was now artistically cutting out his zinc.

    L'Assommoir

    Emile Zola


British Dictionary definitions for zinc

zinc

noun
  1. a brittle bluish-white metallic element that becomes coated with a corrosion-resistant layer in moist air and occurs chiefly in sphalerite and smithsonite. It is a constituent of several alloys, esp brass and nickel-silver, and is used in die-casting, galvanizing metals, and in battery electrodes. Symbol: Zn; atomic no: 30; atomic wt: 65.39; valency: 2; relative density: 7.133; melting pt: 419.58°C; boiling pt: 907°C
  2. informal corrugated galvanized iron
Derived Formszincic, zincous or zincoid, adjectivezincky, zincy or zinky, adjective

Word Origin

C17: from German Zink, perhaps from Zinke prong, from its jagged appearance in the furnace
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 zinc

n.

1650s, from German Zink, perhaps related to Zinke "prong, point;" said to have been used first by Paracelsus (c.1526) on analogy of the form of its crystals after smelting. Zinke is from Old High German zint "a point, jag," from Proto-Germanic *tindja "tine" (cf. Old Norse tindr "point, top, summit," Old English tind "prong, spike;" cf. tine).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

zinc in Medicine

zinc

(zĭngk)
n. Symbol Zn
  1. A metallic element that is brittle at room temperature but becomes malleable when heated and is used in various pharmaceuticals, including astringents and antiseptics. Atomic number 30.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

zinc in Science

zinc

[zĭngk]
Zn
  1. A shiny, bluish-white metallic element that is brittle at room temperature but is malleable when heated. It is used in alloys such as brass and bronze, as a coating for iron and steel, and in various household objects. Zinc is essential to human and animal growth. Atomic number 30; atomic weight 65.39; melting point 419.4°C; boiling point 907°C; specific gravity 7.133 (25°C); valence 2. See Periodic Table.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.