para·​quat | \ ˈper-ə-ˌkwät How to pronounce paraquat (audio) , ˈpa-rə- \

Definition of paraquat

: a highly toxic contact herbicide containing a salt of a cation [C12H14N2]2+

Examples of paraquat in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Similarly, in South Korea, a ban on the herbicide paraquat was followed by a 50% decrease in suicide deaths from pesticide poisoning from 2011-2013. Katie Hunt, CNN, "One person dies every 40 seconds from suicide, WHO says," 9 Sep. 2019 For comparison, a 2010 study found that 42.7 percent of people admitted to two Sri Lankan hospitals for suicide attempts involving the herbicide paraquat wound up dying. Dylan Matthews, Vox, "How pesticide bans can prevent tens of thousands of suicides a year," 15 Nov. 2018

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

First Known Use of paraquat

circa 1961, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for paraquat

para- + quaternary

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Time Traveler for paraquat

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The first known use of paraquat was circa 1961

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Cite this Entry

“Paraquat.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for paraquat


para·​quat | \ ˈpar-ə-ˌkwät How to pronounce paraquat (audio) \

Medical Definition of paraquat

: an herbicide containing a salt of a cation [C12H14N2]2+ that is used especially as a weed killer and that is extremely toxic to the liver, kidneys, and lungs if ingested

More from Merriam-Webster on paraquat

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with paraquat Encyclopedia article about paraquat

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