from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- adj. Containing four replaceable hydrogen atoms in a molecule. Used of acids.
- adj. Containing four univalent basic atoms or radicals. Used of bases or salts.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- adj. containing four replaceable hydrogen atoms
- adj. having four atoms of a univalent metal
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- adj. Capable of neutralizing four molecules of a monacid base; having four hydrogen atoms capable of replacement by bases; quadribasic; -- said of certain acids; thus, normal silicic acid, Si(OH)4, is a tetrabasic acid.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- In chem.: Noting an acid which contains four atoms of hydrogen replaceable by more electropositive elements or radicals, as pyrophosphoric acid, H4P2O7.
- Noting a salt which contains electropositive elements or radicals replacing four atoms of hydrogen.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
Lastly, there is a fourth compound of lime and phosphoric acid, which only occurs in one phosphatic manure -- viz., phosphatic slag, in which indeed it was first discovered -- which consists of four equivalents of lime to one of phosphoric acid, to which the name tetrabasic phosphate of lime or tetracalcic phosphate has been given.
Similarly, we may have tribasic and tetrabasic acids.
The discovery that its phosphoric acid existed, as has been already explained, as a tetrabasic phosphate of lime, has strengthened the opinion that this is the best method of application.
These crystals, by careful analysis, were shown, first by Hilgenstock, to consist of a form of phosphate of lime hitherto unknown, in which four equivalents of lime were combined with one equivalent of phosphoric acid, and which was therefore called "tetrabasic phosphate."
As we have already pointed out in the chapter on Basic Slag, phosphoric acid occurs in the slag in the form of tetrabasic phosphate of lime, although it is invariably stated in analysis as so much tricalcic phosphate.
This may be owing to the fact that, in the tetrabasic phosphate, there is more lime present than that which the phosphoric acid can retain with strong chemical affinity. [