from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A hypothetical substance formerly thought to be a volatile constituent of all combustible substances, released as flame in combustion.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The hypothetical fiery principle formerly assumed to be a necessary constituent of combustible bodies and to be given up by them in burning.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The hypothetical principle of fire, or inflammability, regarded by Stahl as a chemical element.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In old chemistry, the supposed principle of inflammability; the matter of fire in composition with other bodies.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a hypothetical substance once believed to be present in all combustible materials and to be released during burning
From Greek, neuter of phlogistos, inflammable, from phlogizein, to set on fire, from phlox, phlog-, flame; see bhel-1 in Indo-European roots.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Coined by Stahl in 1702, from Ancient Greek φλογιστόν (phlogiston), neuter of φλογιστός (phlogistos, "inflammable"), from φλογίζω (phlogizō, "to set fire to"), from φλόξ (phloks, "flame"). (Wiktionary)