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

  • noun A colorless, spontaneously flammable poisonous gas, PH3, having a fishy odor and used as a fumigant and as a doping agent for solid-state components.
  • noun Any of several organic compounds having the structure of an amine but with phosphorus in place of nitrogen.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Same as phosphureted hydrogen (which see, under phosphureted).
  • noun A coal-tar coloring matter related to acridine. It is a by-product in the manufacture of magenta, and is used chiefly for dyeing leather a reddish yellow. Also known as leather-yellow and Philadelphia yellow G.

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

  • noun (Dyeing) Chrysaniline, often in the form of a salt.
  • noun (Chem.) A colorless gas, PH3, analogous to ammonia, and having a disagreeable odor resembling that of garlic. Called also hydrogen phosphide, and formerly, phosphureted hydrogen.

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

  • noun chemistry, uncountable a toxic gas; hydride of phosphorus, PH3
  • noun chemistry, countable any alkyl or aryl derivative of this compound, PR3 (where at least one R is not H)

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

  • noun a colorless gas with a strong fishy smell; used as a pesticide


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From phosph- + -ine.


  • Titan life's metabolism might involve chemical compounds such as phosphine and hydrogen sulfide, which are both foul-smelling gases that are toxic to humans.

  • The only gas I can think of is poisonous phosphine which is not especially stable.

    Grist - the Latest from Grist

  • India exports corn fumigated with aluminium phosphine, considered milder than methyl bromide, across Asia; no other Asian countries have complained of pests.

    Vietnam Says Indian Corn No Good, Blames Pest

  • The dragons, named for the mythical Terran beast they resembled, had two valuable characteristics: They could instantaneously travel from one place to another, and after chewing a phosphine, bearing rock, they could emit a flaming gas.


  • I discovered turned out to be quite useful for asymmetric hydrogenation, at least those that contained the appropriate enantiomerically pure phosphine ligand.

    Richard R. Schrock - Autobiography

  • Methyl bromide which is currently being replaced by phosphine for the fumigation of stored cocoa beans has been identified as an ozone-depleting substance.

    Agricultural pesticide contamination

  • The resourceful colonists fought back with the last of their space-going technology while devising a series of long-term, biological defenses, chief among them, fire-breathing dragons that chewed phosphine-bearing rocks -- firestone -- to create their flames.

    Dragon's Fire

  • Children in the home may be injured by direct contact with caustic materials such as lye and hydrochloric acid, solvents such as acetone and ether, or toxic gases such as ammonia vapors and phosphine gas.

    The Crisis of Meth

  • (A) was replaced by one of the enantiomers of a chiral phosphine.

    The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2001 - Information for the Public

  • The phosphine first used by Knowles was not enantiomerally pure, yet it produced a mixture in which there was

    The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2001 - Information for the Public


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