carbon

noun, often attributive
car·​bon | \ ˈkär-bən How to pronounce carbon (audio) \

Definition of carbon

1 : a nonmetallic chemical element with atomic number 6 that readily forms compounds with many other elements and is a constituent of organic compounds in all known living tissues — see Chemical Elements Table
2 : a carbon rod used in an arc lamp
3a : a sheet of carbon paper

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Examples of carbon in a Sentence

a carbon of the document this new digital camera is a carbon of a well-known model costing almost twice as much

Recent Examples on the Web

As the vice president of the energy and climate practice for 3Degrees, headquartered in San Francisco, Craig helps companies reduce their carbon emissions. Cotton Codinha, Allure, "7 Influential People on Environmental Advocacy in the Beauty Industry," 22 Apr. 2019 At a time when fighting climate change is more urgent than ever, the Secretary did nothing to address the fact that nearly a quarter of the US' carbon emissions come from the life cycle of drilling and mining on public lands. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "Trump will replace Interior Department Secretary next week," 16 Dec. 2018 While carbon, hydrogen, and nitrogen are common components of smoke, many of the compounds found in wildfire smoke haven’t even been identified yet — but researchers are working on that. Mary Beth Griggs, The Verge, "Scientists fly through plumes of wildfire smoke to unravel its mysteries," 21 Nov. 2018 As the work of the Nobel Prize-winning economist William Nordhaus makes clear, pricing carbon is a much cheaper way of hitting climate goals than command-and-control regulations. Fred Krupp, WSJ, "Harness the Market to Manage the Climate," 15 Oct. 2018 Despite its minuscule carbon emissions, Heine said her nation wants to show it, too, is prepared to do its part. Fox News, "Small islands use big platform to warn of climate change," 27 Sep. 2018 That carbon is still there, and nowadays a fair chunk of it makes up the bodies of living beings. The Economist, "A planetary census puts humans in their place," 24 May 2018 But tests showed the same levels of organic carbon in the green marine ice as any other type of glacier. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Green Icebergs Could Be Secretly Feeding All Ocean Life," 7 Mar. 2019 One to 2 percent of the total carbon in these protoplanetary disks has been incorporated into nanodiamonds, according to the team's estimates. Mike Wall, Space.com, "Puzzling Cosmic Glow Is Caused by Diamond Dust Glamming Up Stars," 11 June 2018

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

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First Known Use of carbon

1788, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for carbon

French carbone, from Latin carbon-, carbo ember, charcoal

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Statistics for carbon

Last Updated

27 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for carbon

The first known use of carbon was in 1788

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More Definitions for carbon

carbon

noun

English Language Learners Definition of carbon

: a chemical element that forms diamonds and coal and that is found in petroleum and in all living plants and animals

carbon

noun
car·​bon | \ ˈkär-bən How to pronounce carbon (audio) \

Kids Definition of carbon

: a chemical element occurring as diamond and graphite, in coal and petroleum, and in plant and animal bodies

carbon

noun, often attributive
car·​bon | \ ˈkär-bən How to pronounce carbon (audio) \

Medical Definition of carbon

: a nonmetallic element found native (as in diamonds and graphite) or as a constituent of coal, petroleum, asphalt, limestone, and organic compounds or obtained artificially (as in activated charcoal) symbol C — see Chemical Elements Table

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More from Merriam-Webster on carbon

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with carbon

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for carbon

Spanish Central: Translation of carbon

Nglish: Translation of carbon for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of carbon for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about carbon

Comments on carbon

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