- capable of functioning either as an acid or as a base.
Origin of amphoteric
1840–50; < Greek amphóter(os) (comparative of ámphō both; cognate with Latin ambō) + -ic
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Examples from the Web for amphoteric
In regard to the indications of the amphoteric character of stronger acids, see Chapter XV.
Bodies of this kind are known as "amphoteric electrolytes," since they yield both positive and negative ions, if dissociated.The Chemistry of Plant Life
Roscoe Wilfred Thatcher
- chem able to function as either a base or an acidAlso: amphiprotic
C19: from Greek amphoteros each of two (from amphō both) + -ic
Word Origin and History for amphoteric
"neither acid nor alkaline," 1832, from Greek amphoteros "each or both of two," variant of amphi-.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- Having the capacity to react as either an acid or a base.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
- Capable of reacting chemically as either an acid or a base. Water, ammonia, and the hydroxides of certain metals are amphoteric.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.