noun, often attributive
plat·​i·​num | \ ˈplat-nəm How to pronounce platinum (audio) , ˈpla-tə-nəm \

Definition of platinum

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a precious grayish-white noncorroding ductile malleable heavy metallic element that fuses with difficulty and is used especially in chemical ware and apparatus, as a catalyst, and in dental and jewelry alloys — see Chemical Elements Table
2 : a moderate gray



Definition of platinum (Entry 2 of 2)

: qualifying for a platinum record
go platinum
: to have enough sales to qualify for a platinum record

Examples of platinum in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Over the past nine years in the industry, Kai has experimented with color, dyeing his hair teal, crimson, pink, and platinum. Devon Abelman, Allure, "K-Pop Star Kai Surprised Fans With Neon Green Hair in New Music Video Teaser," 19 Nov. 2020 The one that’s about to be six times platinum in, like, three months. Emily Tannenbaum, Glamour, "Cardi B Has a Message for ‘Cry Babies’ Upset About Her Billboard Woman of the Year Title," 19 Nov. 2020 The one that's about to be six-times platinum in, like, three months. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Cardi B Makes Haters Take a Seat After Questioning Her Woman of the Year Award," 19 Nov. 2020 As a finishing touch, each structure was coated with a catalytically active nanolayer of platinum/palladium. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Tiny version of USS Voyager sheds light on physics of microswimmers," 17 Nov. 2020 Following Billie Eilish’s dizzying success last year—including triple platinum album sales, five Grammy Awards, and recording the latest Bond theme—she might be forgiven for taking a break while under lockdown. Liam Hess, Vogue, "Billie Eilish’s “Therefore I Am” Video Is a ’90s Mall Rat’s Dream," 12 Nov. 2020 What makes the tune and Suspect208 even more interesting is the band’s platinum bloodlines. Matt Wake |, al, "Band with sons of Slash, Scott Weiland shows potential on debut single," 11 Nov. 2020 At the turn of the 20th century, platinum became more available and was widely used in earrings. Jill Newman, Town & Country, "The Right Earring Can Give You an Instant Facelift," 10 Nov. 2020 Following the 2017 fatality, the fresh tissue samples from multiple organs would generate a ‘reference quality’ genome—a platinum-standard record of the vaquita’s full set of chromosomes. Carolyn Cowan, Smithsonian Magazine, "Vaquita Genome Offers Hope for Species’ Survival," 9 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Riley is a Grammy-winning, multi-platinum music icon widely credited with for creating New Jack Swing, a music style that has influenced contemporary R&B, hip-hop, gospel, soul and pop music since the early 1980s. Taylor Mims, Billboard, "Teddy Riley Signs With UTA for Worldwide Representation," 19 Nov. 2020 At the recommendation of business manager Alan McEvoy, Payne selected Veeps, the streaming platform launched by brothers Benji Madden and Joel Madden from the multi-platinum punk and rock group Good Charlotte. Dave Brooks, Billboard, "Livestream Plan: How Liam Payne Turned His Social Followers Into Ticket-Buying Fans," 5 Oct. 2020 A year before the Anchorage show, the Anchorage Daily News reprinted an Orange County Register review of Snoop’s chart-topping, multi-platinum solo debut. David Reamer, Anchorage Daily News, "A history of Anchorage vs. rap music," 20 Sep. 2020 Banali joined the multi-platinum heavy metal band Quiet Riot in 1982 and performed as the band's drummer for decades. Cydney Henderson, USA TODAY, "Quiet Riot drummer Frankie Banali dies at 68 after 'inspiringly brave' cancer battle," 21 Aug. 2020 Additionally, she's achieved four million cumulative album sales and eight multi-platinum records to date. Heran Mamo, Billboard, "Colbie Caillat Leaves Her Band Gone West: 'This Was Not an Easy Decision'," 12 Aug. 2020 The reenactment at the beginning of the multi-platinum rapper's performance offered a glimpse into the last moments of the life of George Floyd, killed by Minneapolis police last month. Jonathan Landrum Jr., The Christian Science Monitor, "Tributes and politics: How artists used 2020 BET Awards platform," 29 June 2020 As long as that strange, platinum loophole remains on the books, enterprising legislators will continue to consider exploiting it. Robert Hackett, Fortune, "How does America pay for a $2 trillion coronavirus relief bill? With 2 shiny coins, this lawmaker argues," 25 Mar. 2020 Earlier this month, for the Maison Margiela show at Couture Fashion Week, a thick layer of gold glitter was painted all over the model's head, making her brunette locks look platinum blonde. Andrea Park, Allure, "Bella Hadid Cut Her Hair Into a Bob," 17 July 2017

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


1794, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1971, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for platinum


New Latin, from Spanish platina, from diminutive of plata silver — more at plate

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Time Traveler for platinum

Time Traveler

The first known use of platinum was in 1794

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Statistics for platinum

Last Updated

25 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Platinum.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for platinum


How to pronounce platinum (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of platinum

: a heavy, silver-colored metal that is difficult to melt and that is used especially in expensive jewelry


plat·​i·​num | \ ˈpla-tə-nəm How to pronounce platinum (audio) \

Kids Definition of platinum

: a heavy grayish white metallic chemical element


plat·​i·​num | \ ˈplat-nəm, -ᵊn-əm How to pronounce platinum (audio) \

Medical Definition of platinum

: a heavy precious grayish white noncorroding ductile malleable metallic element that fuses with difficulty and is used especially in chemical ware and apparatus, as a catalyst, and in dental and jewelry alloys symbol Pt — see Chemical Elements Table

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More from Merriam-Webster on platinum

Nglish: Translation of platinum for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of platinum for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about platinum

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