American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A hypothetical substance formerly thought to be a volatile constituent of all combustible substances, released as flame in combustion.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In old chemistry, the supposed principle of inflammability; the matter of fire in composition with other bodies. Stahl gave this name to a hypothetical element which he supposed to be pure fire fixed in combustible bodies, in order to distinguish it from fire in action or in a state of liberty.
- n. chemistry, historical The hypothetical fiery principle formerly assumed to be a necessary constituent of combustible bodies and to be given up by them in burning.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Old Chem.) The hypothetical principle of fire, or inflammability, regarded by Stahl as a chemical element.
- n. a hypothetical substance once believed to be present in all combustible materials and to be released during burning
- 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)
- 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)
“We decline entering into a minute examination of his experiments, as few of his recitals of them are free from the triune mystery of phlogiston, which exceeds the utmost stretch of our faith; for according to it, carbon is phlogiston, and hydrogen is phlogiston, and azote is phlogiston; and yet there are not three phlogistons, but one phlogiston!”
“Yet it may not be altogether amiss to reflect that the physicist of to-day is no more certain of his ether than was his predecessor of the eighteenth century of the existence of certain alleged substances which he called phlogiston, caloric, corpuscles of light, and magnetic and electric fluids.”
“With precipitated indigo, the orpiment doesn't create changes, Bergman continued, because the union of phlogiston is too strong — you need the heat and the alkali to relax it.”
“Does this mean a science fiction story cannot be set in a fantasy universe where the theory of phlogiston is true?”
“Stahl, the author of this theory, asserted that there is a principle of inflammability, to which he gave the name phlogiston, having the quality of uniting with substances.”
“The same germ-idea underlying these doctrines is to be found much later in Stahl's phlogistic theory (eighteenth century), which attempted to account for the combustibility of bodies by the assumption that such bodies all contain "phlogiston" -- the hypothetical principle of combustion (see § 72) -- though the concept of "phlogiston" approaches more nearly to the modern idea of an element than do the alchemistic elements or principles.”
“In Fooling with Words: A Celebration of Poets and Their Craft, the TV documentarian Bill Moyers, quoting this poem, asked the author about the meaning of the unfamiliar word phlogiston.”
“This was a forerunner of the phlogiston theory (1723), which claimed, before the discovery of oxygen, that a nonexistent chemical called phlogiston was released during combustion.”
“A peculiarity of the strange thing called phlogiston was that it preferred to be concealed in something, hidden, imprisoned, combined; free phlogiston* was supposed to be always ready to become combined phlogiston.”
“It is the so-called phlogiston-theory first proposed by the chemist Stahl (1660-1734).”
These user-created lists contain the word ‘phlogiston’.
Words are all I have to take your heart away
A collection of words found in English that are either purely Greek or have Greek etymology.
Please add with caution and certainty. Will be regularly updated by me.
Good for intermediate and advanced spellers and anybody who wants to use words with precision
place to place 'fire' words
Mysterious and theoretical substances and "stuff" of legend. More emphasis on the ancient, mystical, mythical, folklore, mathematical, and scientific. I won't be listing too many "sci-fi" or comed...
These come from gamma meditation ,I think.
"Luciferous Logolepsy is a collection of over 9,000 obscure English words. Though the definition of an 'English' word might seem to be straightforward, it is not. There exist so many adopted, deriv...
every major discipline has uniquely developed esoteric nomenclature to facilitate interdisciplinary dissemination
coined by Alchemists and scientists of the Enlightment
green lion, spirit of salt, butter of antimony, flower of zinc, spirit of hartshorn, salt of hartshorn, narcotic salt of ..., blue vitriol, fixed air, regulus of antimony, crucible, sal ammoniac and 31 more...
words with pyr or the sense of fire
I enjoy collecting words, for I have no fear of them ever running out.
Looking for tweets for phlogiston.