celluloid


cel·lu·loid

noun \ˈsel-yə-ˌlid\

: a tough kind of plastic that was used in the past to make photographic film and other products

: the film used to make movies

Full Definition of CELLULOID

1
:  a tough flammable thermoplastic composed essentially of cellulose nitrate and camphor
2
:  a motion-picture film <a work … making its third appearance on celluloid — John McCarten>
celluloid adjective

Origin of CELLULOID

from Celluloid, a trademark
First Known Use: 1870

celluloid

noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Name for the first synthetic plastic material, developed in 1869. Made of a colloid of cellulose nitrate (nitrocellulose) plasticized with camphor, it is tough, cheap to produce, and resistant to water, oils, and dilute acids. It found a great variety of uses in combs, films, toys, and many other mass-produced consumer goods. Though it has been replaced in many uses by nonflammable synthetic polymers (originally cellulose acetate and Bakelite, then a host of others), it is still manufactured and used.

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: cellulolytic
Previous Word in the Dictionary: cellulo-
All Words Near: celluloid

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up celluloid? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).