oxidize

verb

ox·​i·​dize ˈäk-sə-ˌdīz How to pronounce oxidize (audio)
oxidized; oxidizing

transitive verb

1
: to combine with oxygen
Other chemicals then oxidize the sulfur dioxide to form sulfuric acid, which along with the nitric acid increases the acidity of the dewdrop.R. Monastersky
Should the cork be allowed to dry out, it will shrink and allow air to seep in and oxidize the wine.Peter D. Meltzer
2
: to dehydrogenate especially by the action of oxygen
oxidize an alcohol to an aldehyde
3
: to change (a compound) by increasing the proportion of the electronegative part or change (an element or ion) from a lower to a higher positive valence
What mix of products is formed is a function of the electrode potential used to oxidize the chloride ion.Chemical & Engineering News
: remove one or more electrons from (an atom, ion, or molecule)
oxidize metallic copper to ionic copper

intransitive verb

: to become oxidized
Fats can either oxidize (combine with oxygen) or hydrolyze (combine with water) to become rancid.Shirley Corriher
Silver does not oxidize, or rust, on exposure to air. In fact, compared with most other elements, it is not particularly reactive.C. Claiborne Ray
oxidizable adjective

Examples of oxidize in a Sentence

The paint oxidizes and discolors rapidly.
Recent Examples on the Web There are lots of reasons that copper tarnishes: Exposure to air, moisture, dirt, and even the oils on your skin can all react with the copper and cause the surface to oxidize and turn color. Jan Soults Walker, Better Homes & Gardens, 10 July 2024 In February, Chipotle also posted on X/Twitter that sometimes the chain's guacamole can oxidize, leaving brown spots. Haadiza Ogwude, The Enquirer, 5 July 2024 With proper care, 14k solid white gold jewelry will not oxidize or discolor, therefore remaining beautiful and wearable for life. Chris Sims, The Indianapolis Star, 2 July 2024 Tombstone is renowned for its high grade, oxidized, silver-gold mesothermal stringer lode veins, hydrothermal breccias and manto CRD orebodies that were mined in the late 1800's and early 1900's. Sacramento Bee, 24 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for oxidize 

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

Word History

First Known Use

1802, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of oxidize was in 1802

Dictionary Entries Near oxidize

Cite this Entry

“Oxidize.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/oxidize. Accessed 21 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

oxidize

verb
ox·​i·​dize ˈäk-sə-ˌdīz How to pronounce oxidize (audio)
oxidized; oxidizing
1
: to combine with oxygen
2
: to remove hydrogen from especially by the action of oxygen
3
: to remove one or more electrons from (an atom, ion, or molecule)
4
: to become oxidized
oxidizer noun

Medical Definition

oxidize

verb
ox·​i·​dize
variants also British oxidise
oxidized also British oxidised; oxidizing also British oxidising

transitive verb

1
: to combine with oxygen
2
: to dehydrogenate especially by the action of oxygen
3
: to change (a compound) by increasing the proportion of the electronegative part or change (an element or ion) from a lower to a higher positive valence : remove one or more electrons from (an atom, ion, or molecule)
oxidizable adjective
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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