potassium cyanide


: a very poisonous crystalline salt KCN used especially in gold and silver extraction from ore

Examples of potassium cyanide in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The victims ingested Extra Strength Tylenol capsules that was later learned to be laced with potassium cyanide, a highly toxic chemical asphyxiant that interferes with the body's ability to use oxygen and causes rapid death. Chris Eberhart, Fox News, 12 Aug. 2023 Lab results revealed that many of the pills had been swapped out with potassium cyanide tablets. Emilie Le Beau Lucchesi, Discover Magazine, 26 Sep. 2022 On March 15, when Angela Craig was hospitalized for the final time, one of James Craig's business partners told a nurse about the potassium cyanide delivery and how there was no need for it at their dental practice, prompting the nurse to contact police, according to the affidavit. Emily Shapiro, ABC News, 12 July 2023 The office manager contacted another colleague with information about the potassium cyanide package after Angela went to the hospital a third time with the same symptoms, according to the warrant. Daniella Silva, NBC News, 23 Mar. 2023 In September 1982, seven Chicago-area residents died after swallowing Tylenol capsules laced with potassium cyanide. Christy Gutowski, Chicago Tribune, 3 Aug. 2023 For instance, Nolan shows Oppenheimer, as a student at Cambridge, injecting potassium cyanide into an apple belonging to a professor who humiliates and punishes him for poor laboratory technique—apparently to no consequence. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, 26 July 2023 He was accused of killing Angela, the mother of his six children, by dosing her with potassium cyanide between March 6 and March 15. Michael Lee Simpson, Peoplemag, 13 July 2023 While Angela Craig was hospitalized again from March 9 to March 14, James Craig allegedly ordered the highly lethal chemical compound potassium cyanide, which was delivered to his dental practice on March 13, according to the affidavit. Emily Shapiro, ABC News, 12 July 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'potassium cyanide.' 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

1866, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of potassium cyanide was in 1866

Dictionary Entries Near potassium cyanide

Cite this Entry

“Potassium cyanide.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/potassium%20cyanide. Accessed 21 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

potassium cyanide

: a very poisonous salt used especially to obtain gold and silver from ore

Medical Definition

potassium cyanide

: a very poisonous crystalline salt KCN

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