phlogiston

noun
phlo·​gis·​ton | \flō-ˈji-stən \

Definition of phlogiston 

: the hypothetical principle of fire regarded formerly as a material substance

Examples of phlogiston in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Lavoisier didn’t think that Priestley was right about phlogiston, prompting a long-running battle. Kat Eschner, Smithsonian, "The Father of Modern Chemistry Proved Respiration Occurred by Freezing a Guinea Pig," 25 Aug. 2017

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

First Known Use of phlogiston

1733, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for phlogiston

New Latin, from Greek, neuter of phlogistos inflammable, from phlogizein to set on fire, from phlog-, phlox flame, from phlegein

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about phlogiston

Share phlogiston

Statistics for phlogiston

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for phlogiston

The first known use of phlogiston was in 1733

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on phlogiston

See words that rhyme with phlogiston

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about phlogiston

Comments on phlogiston

What made you want to look up phlogiston? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

noxious or harmful

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A Thanksgiving Word Quiz

  • a-traditional-thanksgiving-dinner
  • November comes from a word for which of the following numbers?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!