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Definition of "alcohol" []

  • A colorless volatile flammable liquid, C2H5OH, synthesized or obtained by fermentation of sugars and starches and widely used, either pure or denatured, as a solvent and in drugs, cleaning solutions, explosives, and intoxicating beverages. Also called ethanol, ethyl alcohol, grain alcohol. (noun)
  • Intoxicating liquor containing alcohol. (noun)
  • Any of a series of hydroxyl compounds, the simplest of which are derived from saturated hydrocarbons, have the general formula CnH2n+1OH, and include ethanol and methanol. (noun)
  • A colourless flammable liquid, the active principle of intoxicating drinks, produced by the fermentation of sugars, esp glucose, and used as a solvent and in the manufacture of organic chemicals. Formula: C2H5OH (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • A drink or drinks containing this substance (noun)
  • Any one of a class of organic compounds that contain one or more hydroxyl groups bound to carbon atoms. The simplest alcohols have the formula ROH, where R is an alkyl group (noun)

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Use "alcohol" in a sentence
  • "Methyl alcohol is obtained entirely from this source, and on this account is commonly called _wood alcohol_."
  • "In chemistry, the term alcohol is applied to a large family of substances with a similar molecular structure."
  • "Our word alcohol comes from medieval Arab alchemy, which strongly influenced Western science and gave it several other important terms, including chemistry, alkali, and algebra."