• synonyms


[loo-bri-kuh nt]
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  1. a substance, as oil or grease, for lessening friction, especially in the working parts of a mechanism.
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  1. capable of lubricating; used to lubricate.
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Origin of lubricant

1815–25; < Latin lūbricant- (stem of lūbricāns), present participle of lūbricāre to make slippery. See lubric, -ant
Related formsnon·lu·bri·cant, nounun·lu·bri·cant, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

coating, oil, grease, wax, silicone

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British Dictionary definitions for lubricant


  1. a lubricating substance, such as oil
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  1. serving to lubricate
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Word Origin

C19: from Latin lūbricāns, present participle of lūbricāre. See lubricate
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 lubricant


1828, probably from lubricant (adj.), or from Latin lubricantem.

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"reducing friction," 1809, from Latin lubricantem (nominative lubricans), present participle of lubricare "to make slippery or smooth," from lubricus "slippery; easily moved, sliding, gliding;" figuratively "uncertain, hazardous, dangerous; seductive," from PIE *sleubh- "to slip, slide" (see sleeve).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper