aqua regia

aqua re·​gia | \ ˈä-kwə-ˈrē-j(ē-)ə How to pronounce aqua regia (audio) , ˈa-kwə- How to pronounce aqua regia (audio) \

Definition of aqua regia

: a mixture of nitric and hydrochloric acids that dissolves gold or platinum

Examples of aqua regia in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web As German troops marched in the streets of Copenhagen, chemist George de Hevesy stashed the medals in aqua regia, an acid strong enough to dissolve gold. National Geographic, 2 Oct. 2017

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

First Known Use of aqua regia

1617, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for aqua regia

New Latin, literally, royal water

Learn More About aqua regia

Time Traveler for aqua regia

Time Traveler

The first known use of aqua regia was in 1617

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near aqua regia


aqua regia


See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for aqua regia

Cite this Entry

“Aqua regia.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Jul. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for aqua regia

aqua regia

aqua re·​gia | \ -ˈrē-j(ē-)ə How to pronounce aqua regia (audio) \

Medical Definition of aqua regia

: a mixture of nitric and hydrochloric acids that dissolves gold or platinum

called also nitrohydrochloric acid

More from Merriam-Webster on aqua regia Encyclopedia article about aqua regia


Test Your Vocabulary

Great Words for Scrabble

  • scrabble tiles that read scrabble quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!