carbolic acid


Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Chaotic scenes of firefighters using their spray pumps to cleanse the nation ensue, quarrels break out between officers and merchants, Turks and Christians alike refuse to be hosed with carbolic acid. Kaya Genç, The New Republic, 4 Apr. 2023 Itching during the drying up of the pustules is almost completely controlled by a soft ointment of beeswax and sweet oil, with a little tannin, opium, and carbolic acid incorporated, which has, moreover, the advantage of rendering the smell less disagreeable. Mark Fischetti, Scientific American, 2 Nov. 2021 At the time of his professorial appointment to Johns Hopkins Hospital, Halsted routinely relied on the use of antibacterial solutions of mercuric chloride and carbolic acid in the operating theatre. Rebecca Kreston, Discover Magazine, 29 Aug. 2015 Documents also list the death of a teacher, Mary Lila Jenks, who died of an opium overdose in 1905 and a son of the superintendent, a 3-year-old who died after drinking a bottle of carbolic acid. Courtney Tanner, The Salt Lake Tribune, 23 Aug. 2021 The third body was liberally washed in carbolic acid and covered with ice to be exhibited for visitors. Jeff Suess, The Enquirer, 25 Apr. 2021 Her hands were breaking out due to the use of carbolic acid and other harsh antiseptics in the hospital. Jennifer Barger, National Geographic, 7 July 2020 Then Lister invented antisepsis—a technique involving carbolic acid that stopped surgical patients from getting life-threatening infections. Matt Beane, Wired, 8 June 2020 In 1922, engineers at the Water Department of Cleveland did tests of the city’s drinking water to respond to claims that the water tasted medicinal or like carbolic acid. Lorraine Boissoneault, Smithsonian, 19 June 2019 See More

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

Word History


International Scientific Vocabulary carb- + Latin oleum oil — more at oil

First Known Use

circa 1859, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of carbolic acid was circa 1859

Dictionary Entries Near carbolic acid

Cite this Entry

“Carbolic acid.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition

carbolic acid

car·​bol·​ic acid
: phenol

Medical Definition

carbolic acid

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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