Dictionary

paraffin

noun par·af·fin \ˈper-ə-fən, ˈpa-rə-\

: a soft, waxy substance that is usually made from petroleum or coal and is used in candles and other products

Full Definition of PARAFFIN

1
a :  a waxy crystalline flammable substance obtained especially from distillates of wood, coal, petroleum, or shale oil that is a complex mixture of hydrocarbons and is used chiefly in coating and sealing, in candles, in rubber compounding, and in pharmaceuticals and cosmetics
b :  any of various mixtures of similar hydrocarbons including mixtures that are semisolid or oily
2
:  alkane
3
chiefly British :  kerosene
par·af·fin·ic \ˌper-ə-ˈfi-nik, pa-rə-\ adjective

Origin of PARAFFIN

German, from Latin parum too little (akin to Greek pauros little, paid-, pais child) + affinis bordering on — more at few, affinity
First Known Use: 1838

paraffin

noun par·af·fin \ˈpar-ə-fən\   (Medical Dictionary)

Medical Definition of PARAFFIN

1
a :  a waxy crystalline flammable substance obtained especially from distillates of wood, coal, petroleum, or shale oil that is a complex mixture of hydrocarbons and is used chiefly in coating and sealing, in candles, in rubber compounding, and in pharmaceuticals and cosmetics b :  any of various mixtures of similar hydrocarbons including mixtures that are semisolid or oily
2
:  alkane
par·af·fin·ic \ˌpar-ə-ˈfin-ik\ adjective
May 24, 2015
erudite Hear it
learned or pedantic
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