form·​al·​de·​hyde | \ fȯr-ˈmal-də-ˌhīd How to pronounce formaldehyde (audio) , fər- \

Definition of formaldehyde

: a colorless pungent irritating gas CH2O used chiefly in aqueous solution as a disinfectant and preservative and in chemical synthesis

Examples of formaldehyde in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But that work has not been without intense controversy -- including with Katrina in 2005, an episode epitomized, to critics, when the agency provided temporary trailers as housing which also included high levels of the carcinogenic formaldehyde. Isabella Murray, ABC News, 30 Sep. 2022 This was because the cadavers were preserved in formaldehyde. Will Self, Harper’s Magazine , 28 Sep. 2022 But the formaldehyde-free conversion varnish isn’t so durable. Jeanne Huber, Washington Post, 29 Aug. 2022 And whereas some countries’ regulators have banned more than twenty-four hundred cosmetic ingredients, from parabens to formaldehyde, the F.D.A. has banned or restricted fewer than a dozen. Casey Cep, The New Yorker, 12 Sep. 2022 Dozens of turbine operators faced a Monday deadline to comply with the formaldehyde rule, which is being reinstated after an 18-year stay. Matthew Daly, ajc, 6 Sep. 2022 Part of the concern with keratin treatments revolves around one of the ingredients found in most traditional salon formulas: formaldehyde. Harper's Bazaar Staff, Harper's BAZAAR, 9 Aug. 2022 Since 2015, state regulators have also fined the facility more than $267,000 for a range of water quality violations, including exceeding discharge limits for formaldehyde, ammonia and fecal coliform. Drew Kann, ajc, 15 July 2022 California’s Air Resource Board, for example, maintains a raft of requirements applying to the specific formulation that gas producers and importers can sell in the state, applying strict rules to chemicals like benzene, formaldehyde and sulfur. Adrian Blanco, Washington Post, 20 June 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of formaldehyde

1872, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for formaldehyde

International Scientific Vocabulary form- + aldehyde

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Time Traveler for formaldehyde

Time Traveler

The first known use of formaldehyde was in 1872

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Dictionary Entries Near formaldehyde

formal cause



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Statistics for formaldehyde

Last Updated

3 Oct 2022

Cite this Entry

“Formaldehyde.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Oct. 2022.

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More Definitions for formaldehyde


form·​al·​de·​hyde | \ fȯr-ˈmal-də-ˌhīd, fər- How to pronounce formaldehyde (audio) \

Medical Definition of formaldehyde

: a colorless pungent irritating gas CH2O used chiefly as a disinfectant and preservative and in chemical synthesis

More from Merriam-Webster on formaldehyde

Nglish: Translation of formaldehyde for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about formaldehyde


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