Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An organic molecule containing a CN group, an organic derivative of hydrocyanic acid.
  • noun An oil-resistant copolymer of acrylonitrile and butadiene, used especially for disposable gloves, gaskets, seals, and tubing.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In organic chemistry, the class-name of compounds which contain the univalent radical -C: N. They are prepared by the action of alkyl haloids on potassium cyanide and, in some cases, by the dehydration of organic ammonium salts into which they are reconverted by the action of acids or alkalies. They are also called acid nitriles or alkyl cyanides. Occasionally tertiary amines (R3N) are called nitrile bases.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Chem.) Any one of a series of compounds bearing the cyanide radical (-CN); particularly, one of those cyanides of alcohol radicals which, by boiling with acids or alkalies, produce a carboxyl acid, with the elimination of the nitrogen as ammonia.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun chemistry any of a class of organic compounds containing a cyano functional group -C≡N

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

  • noun any of a class of organic compounds containing the cyano radical -CN

Etymologies

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

[nitr(o)– + -ile, chemical suff. (probably variant of –yl).]

Examples

Comments

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  • Makes for better gloves than latex.

    December 6, 2006

  • Nitrile is a cyanide-bearing compound. Your skin is a huge absorbant organ. Nitrile rubber gloves love to hug your skin.

    June 10, 2010