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am·​yl ˈa-məl How to pronounce amyl (audio)
: any of various isomeric alkyl radicals C5H11− derived from pentane


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combining form

variants or amylo-
: starch

Examples of amyl in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Humans have also been found as able as dogs and rabbits at smelling the main odorant in bananas (amyl acetate), and are more sensitive to mice than at least one component odor of human blood. Brian Handwerk, Smithsonian, 22 May 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'amyl.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



Latin amylum + English -yl

Combining form

Latin amylum, from Greek amylon, from neuter of amylos unmilled (of grain), from a- + mylē mill — more at meal

First Known Use


1847, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of amyl was in 1847

Dictionary Entries Near amyl

Cite this Entry

“Amyl.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Jul. 2024.

Medical Definition


am·​yl ˈam-əl How to pronounce amyl (audio)
: a univalent hydrocarbon radical C5H11 that occurs in various isomeric forms and is derived from pentane

called also pentyl

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