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salicylic acid

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noun Chemistry, Pharmacology.
a white, crystalline, very slightly water-soluble powder, C7H6O3, prepared from salicin or phenol: used as a food preservative, in the manufacture of aspirin, and in medicine chiefly in the form of a salicylate as a remedy for rheumatic and gouty conditions.
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Origin of salicylic acid

First recorded in 1830–40
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

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British Dictionary definitions for salicylic acid

salicylic acid
/ (ˌsælɪˈsɪlɪk) /

noun
a white crystalline slightly water-soluble substance with a sweet taste and bitter aftertaste, used in the manufacture of aspirin, dyes, and perfumes, and as a fungicide. Formula: C 6 H 4 (OH)(COOH)

Word Origin for salicylic acid

C19: from salicyl (via French from Latin salix a willow + -yl) + -ic
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

Scientific definitions for salicylic acid

salicylic acid
[ săl′ĭ-sĭlĭk ]

A white, crystalline acid used to make aspirin, to treat certain skin conditions, and to preserve and flavor foods. Salicylic acid is benzoic acid with a hydroxyl group (OH) attached to the carboxyl group (COOH). Chemical formula: C7H6O3.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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