acetic acid

ace·​tic acid | \ ə-ˈsē-tik- How to pronounce acetic acid (audio) \

Definition of acetic acid

: a colorless pungent liquid acid C2H4O2 that is the chief acid of vinegar and that is used especially in synthesis (as of plastics)

Examples of acetic acid in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The acetic acid content in apple cider vinegar is said to promote gut health, curb hunger, and more. Katlyn Moncada, Better Homes & Gardens, 22 June 2022 As the name implies, a defining characteristic of this genus is the ability to oxidize organic carbon sources like sucrose, glucose, and ethanol into acetic acid, which is known for its antimicrobial properties. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 24 Jan. 2022 The company said acetic acid is produced to meet requirements for shipping in the food industry and is used in textiles, plastic bottles, industrial solvents and other chemicals. Chron, 28 July 2021 For example, one chemicals company had long-term contracts for acetic acid, but a reverse auction of three providers and three distributors resulted in a 11.5% reduction in price. Forbes, 9 Nov. 2021 But glacial acetic acid is a flammable liquid that can cause severe skin burns and eye damage, according to the National Library of Medicine. Diane Herbst,, 28 July 2021 Simply put, vinegar comes from anything that has alcohol in it; bacteria turn the alcohol into acetic acid. Washington Post, 8 Sep. 2021 The Moderna vaccine’s ingredients also include lipids (including PEG), tromethamine, tromethamine hydrochloride, acetic acid, sodium acetate and sucrose. Julie Washington, cleveland, 13 Aug. 2021 The leak of acetic acid, a food preservative that is commonly used to make vinegar and can be flammable, occurred at 7:35 p.m. Tuesday at the LyondellBasell facility, which is the world's third-largest producer of the acid, according to the company. Arkansas Online, 29 July 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'acetic acid.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of acetic acid

1788, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for acetic acid

acetic borrowed from French acétique, from Latin acētum "sour wine, vinegar" (noun derivative from *acētus, verbal adjective of acēre "to be sour," going back to Indo-European h2eḱ-eh1- "to be sharp") + French -ique -ic entry 1 — more at edge entry 1

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Time Traveler for acetic acid

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The first known use of acetic acid was in 1788

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Dictionary Entries Near acetic acid

ac etiam

acetic acid

acetic aldehyde

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Statistics for acetic acid

Last Updated

28 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Acetic acid.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for acetic acid

acetic acid


Medical Definition of acetic acid

: a colorless pungent liquid acid C2H4O2 that is the chief acid of vinegar and that is used especially in synthesis (as of plastics) and occasionally in medicine as an astringent and styptic

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