Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Used formerly as a name for nitrogen.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Nitrogen.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Same as nitrogen.
  • n. A switch or whip.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A name formerly given to nitrogen, because it is unfit for respiration.
  • n. A whip or switch.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an obsolete name for nitrogen

Etymologies

French; see azo-.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French azote, from Ancient Greek ἀ- (a-, "without") + ζωή (zōē, "life"). Named by Antoine Lavoisier, who saw it as the part of air which cannot sustain life. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The term azote and symbol Az are still retained by the French chemists.

    An Elementary Study of Chemistry

  • [3] The other, from its property of destroying life, is called azote, and forms of course the remaining three fourths of the atmosphere.

    A Lecture on the Preservation of Health

  • What has been absorbed is the vital air, and what remains, the azote, which is incapable of supporting flame.

    A Lecture on the Preservation of Health

  • On plunging a combustible body into the remaining air, it is instantly extinguished; an animal in the same situation is immediately deprived of life: from this latter circumstance this air has been called azote, or azotic gas.

    Popular Lectures on Zoonomia Or The Laws of Animal Life, in Health and Disease

  • Another part of the atmosphere, which is called azote, is perpetually set at liberty from animal and vegetable bodies by putrefaction or combustion, from many springs of water, from volatile alcali, and probably from fixed alcali, of which there is an exhaustless source in the water of the ocean.

    The Botanic Garden A Poem in Two Parts. Part 1: the Economy of Vegetation

  • The common air of the atmosphere appears by the analysis of Dr. Priestley and other philosophers to consist of about three parts of an elastic fluid unfit for respiration or combustion, called azote by the French school, and about one fourth of pure vital air fit for the support of animal life and of combustion, called oxygene.

    The Botanic Garden A Poem in Two Parts. Part 1: the Economy of Vegetation

  • The French chemist Antoine Laurent Lavoisier named nitrogen azote, meaning "without life."

    Nitrogen

  • The French chemist Antoine Laurent Lavoisier named nitrogen azote, meaning without life.

    About.com Chemistry

  • A man under the stress of a feeling which by its intensity has become a monomania, often finds himself in the frame of mind to which opium, hasheesh, or the protoxyde of azote might have brought him.

    Scenes from a Courtesan's Life

  • It is the uniform effect of culture on the human mind, not to shake our faith in the stability of particular phenomena, as of heat, water, azote; but to lead us to regard nature as a phenomenon, not a substance; to attribute necessary existence to spirit; to esteem nature as an accident and an effect.

    Nature

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