chemical

adjective
chem·​i·​cal | \ ˈke-mi-kəl How to pronounce chemical (audio) \

Definition of chemical

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, used in, or produced by chemistry or the phenomena of chemistry chemical reactions
2a : acting or operated or produced by chemicals a chemical fire extinguisher
b : detectable by chemical means

chemical

noun

Definition of chemical (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a substance obtained by a chemical process or producing a chemical effect

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Other Words from chemical

Adjective

chemically \ ˈke-​mi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce chemically (audio) \ adverb

Examples of chemical in a Sentence

Adjective

They studied the compound's chemical structure.

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The technology helps detects plant diseases and offers both chemical and physical treatment as well as prevention measures. Amindeh Blaise Atabong, Quartz Africa, "This startup is using artificial intelligence to help African farmers tackle crop pests and diseases," 2 Aug. 2019 Wildcats live solitary lives and invest considerable time and effort communicating indirectly—via visual and chemical messages—just to avoid having to see each other. Lauren Robin Finka, Quartz, "How to stroke a cat, according to science," 23 July 2019 Bae encourages daily gentle exfoliation with a cleanser containing physical or chemical exfoliants or any topical product with alpha hydroxy acids. Audrey Noble, Harper's BAZAAR, "How To Get Rid of Laugh Lines With Five Expert-Approved Tips," 25 June 2019 This study confirmed that despite bacteria’s physical and chemical complexity, large-scale patterns in their motion can be explained by simple, Vicsek-like models. Quanta Magazine, "Swirling Bacteria Linked to the Physics of Phase Transitions," 16 June 2019 A year earlier, Tomahawk cruise missiles struck an airfield in Syria where Pentagon officials said a chemical attack had originated. Tom Vanden Brook, USA TODAY, "Trump canceled Iran strike after US drone attack, no indication decision will be reversed, official said," 20 June 2019 The cycle repeated in April 2017, after the Syrian regime launched another chemical attack on the town of Khan Shaykhun (sometimes also spelled Sheikhoun). Muhammad Idrees Ahmad, The New York Review of Books, "Bellingcat and How Open Source Reinvented Investigative Journalism," 10 June 2019 Both Syria and Russia deny that government forces have ever used chemical arms. Fox News, "NATO reports Russian naval buildup amid Syria tensions," 29 Aug. 2018 The 1997 Chemical Weapons Convention bans the manufacture and stockpiling of chemical arms. Wiktor Szary, WSJ, "U.K.’s May Says It Is ‘Highly Likely’ Russia Was Behind Skripal Poisoning," 12 Mar. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Later in Darwin, the largest city in the Northern Territory, the head was treated with chemicals to remove its flesh. Ngm Maps, National Geographic, "‘This photograph was the hardest I’ve ever had to make’," 1 Aug. 2019 Allergic rashes aren’t the only health issue associated with clothing chemicals. Markham Heid, Time, "Why You Should Always Wash New Clothes Before Wearing Them," 23 July 2019 The act was named after NYPD officer James Zadroga, who developed a respiratory disease after weeks of contact with the toxic chemicals around the attack site and died in 2006. Catherine Kim, Vox, "September 11th Victim Compensation Fund," 23 July 2019 Some people might prefer griping and swatting to being spritzed with chemicals. Ask Amy, oregonlive.com, "Ask Amy: Mother-in-law’s friendship with husband’s ex-wife causes family rift," 19 July 2019 Some people might prefer griping and swatting to being spritzed with chemicals. Amy Dickinson, Detroit Free Press, "Mother-in-law’s friendship with ex is disruptive," 19 July 2019 Some people might prefer griping and swatting to being spritzed with chemicals. Amy Dickinson, The Denver Post, "Ask Amy: Mother-in-law’s friendship with ex is disruptive," 19 July 2019 Some people might prefer griping and swatting to being spritzed with chemicals. Amy Dickinson, chicagotribune.com, "Ask Amy: Mother-in-law’s friendship with ex is disruptive," 19 July 2019 Some people might prefer griping and swatting to being spritzed with chemicals. Amy Dickinson, The Mercury News, "Ask Amy: We have bug spray, they have complaints," 19 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'chemical.' 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 chemical

Adjective

1576, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1739, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for chemical

Last Updated

10 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for chemical

The first known use of chemical was in 1576

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More Definitions for chemical

chemical

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of chemical

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of or relating to chemistry
: working by means of chemicals

chemical

noun

English Language Learners Definition of chemical (Entry 2 of 2)

: a substance (such as an element or compound) that is made by a chemical process

chemical

adjective
chem·​i·​cal | \ ˈke-mi-kəl How to pronounce chemical (audio) \

Kids Definition of chemical

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of or relating to chemistry or chemicals

Other Words from chemical

chemically adverb

chemical

noun

Kids Definition of chemical (Entry 2 of 2)

: any substance (as an acid) that is formed when two or more other substances act upon one another or that is used to produce a change in another substance

chemical

adjective
chem·​i·​cal | \ ˈkem-i-kəl How to pronounce chemical (audio) \

Medical Definition of chemical

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, used in, or produced by chemistry
2a : acting or operated or produced by chemicals
b : detectable by chemical means

Other Words from chemical

chemically \ -​i-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce chemically (audio) \ adverb

chemical

noun

Medical Definition of chemical (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a substance (as an element or chemical compound) obtained by a chemical process or used for producing a chemical effect

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More from Merriam-Webster on chemical

Spanish Central: Translation of chemical

Nglish: Translation of chemical for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of chemical for Arabic Speakers

Comments on chemical

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