solvent

adjective
sol·​vent | \ ˈsäl-vənt How to pronounce solvent (audio) , ˈsȯl-\

Definition of solvent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : able to pay all legal debts a solvent company
2 : that dissolves or can dissolve solvent action of water

solvent

noun

Definition of solvent (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a usually liquid substance capable of dissolving or dispersing one or more other substances
2 : something that provides a solution
3 : something that eliminates or attenuates something especially unwanted

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from solvent

Adjective

solvently adverb

Noun

solventless \ ˈsäl-​vənt-​ləs How to pronounce solventless (audio) , ˈsȯl-​ \ adjective

Examples of solvent in a Sentence

Adjective

He couldn't stay solvent after losing his business.

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Incidents detailed in the report include using a solvent to clean valves without checking with the valve manufacturer; the improper solvent damaged the valves and forced their replacement. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Webb Space Telescope pushed back again, won’t launch until 2021," 27 June 2018 Any small leaks let the solvent evaporate off at the site, sealing the area with latex. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "How bicycles have changed in the last 25 years," 10 Nov. 2018 Humor is the universal solvent against the abrasive elements of life. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "Read Alan Simpson's Full Eulogy Honoring George H.W. Bush," 5 Dec. 2018 Contaminants, such as microorganisms like E. coli, pesticides, solvent byproducts used to synthesize marijuana oils, or heavy metals. Michael Zoorob, Washington Post, "How will you know if there’s E. coli in your marijuana? No one’s figured out how to test and regulate it yet.," 19 Mar. 2018 The National Flood Insurance program was solvent through 2004. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Flood insurance is broken," 20 Sep. 2018 Based on estimates in the trustees report, the more immigrants that come in, the longer the Social Security system will stay solvent. Alexia Fernández Campbell, Vox, "Why baby boomers need immigrants to fund their retirement, in 2 charts," 1 Aug. 2018 Debtor nations that borrow from others to remain solvent eventually lose power to control their own destinies. WSJ, "Boosting Industry Isn’t Trump’s Sole Trade Goal," 11 July 2018 In response to the financial crisis, Congress last October voted to cancel $16 billion of NFIP’s outstanding debt to the Treasury to help keep the program solvent. Daniel Cusick, Scientific American, "As Hurricane Season Ramps Up, Flood Insurance Program Set to Expire," 11 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

This type of pollution is generally caused by motor vehicle exhaust, industrial emissions, gasoline vapors, and chemical solvents, NOAA says. Korin Miller, SELF, "How to Stay Safe When Your City’s Air Quality Is Dangerous," 21 Aug. 2018 Blot until the solvent is absorbed and repeat until the stain disappears. Lauren Smith, Good Housekeeping, "How to Get Coffee Stains Out of Absolutely Everything," 6 Sep. 2018 Brake fluid and other solvents can be left to dry out in a pan of kitty litter. Mike Allen, Popular Mechanics, "How to Dispose of Hazardous Waste Without Damaging the Environment," 9 Oct. 2018 Finally, the solvents are distilled out of the oily liquid and recycled over and over again. Clifford Krauss, The Seattle Times, "Canadian firm tests new process to turn Utah sands into oil," 27 Aug. 2018 The spill initially was thought to be all acetone — a solvent used in many nail polish removers that can irritate the nose, throat, eye and skin at moderate to high levels of exposure. Joy Resmovits, latimes.com, "A chemical spill, unchecked eyewash stations, poor training: Audit details Cal State's lax lab safety," 25 Apr. 2018 The company says its cocktail of solvents can separate oil from rocks at little cost and with no water or air pollution. Clifford Krauss, The Seattle Times, "Canadian firm tests new process to turn Utah sands into oil," 27 Aug. 2018 In his 121-page findings, Zilly found that Troy, now defunct, and LeatherCare were equally at fault for the pollution, even if there were few environmental standards governing the industry when PCE was commonly used as a solvent. Steve Miletich, The Seattle Times, "Judge holds Seattle Times, leather-cleaning company responsible for cleanup costs at former Troy Laundry site," 24 Aug. 2018 But numerous humans errors at Northrop Grumman over the last few months have stalled the telescope’s development: an incorrect solvent was used to clean a fuel valve, while someone applied the wrong voltage during a test. Loren Grush, The Verge, "Why NASA is struggling to get its most powerful space telescope off the ground," 1 Aug. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of solvent

Adjective

1630, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1671, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for solvent

Adjective

Latin solvent-, solvens, present participle of solvere to dissolve, pay

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about solvent

Statistics for solvent

Last Updated

13 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for solvent

The first known use of solvent was in 1630

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for solvent

solvent

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of solvent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: able to pay debts

solvent

noun

English Language Learners Definition of solvent (Entry 2 of 2)

technical : a liquid substance that is used to dissolve another substance

solvent

noun
sol·​vent | \ ˈsäl-vənt How to pronounce solvent (audio) , ˈsȯl-\

Kids Definition of solvent

: a usually liquid substance in which other substances can be dissolved or dispersed Turpentine is a solvent for paint.

solvent

adjective
sol·​vent | \ ˈsäl-vənt, ˈsȯl- How to pronounce solvent (audio) \

Medical Definition of solvent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: that dissolves or can dissolve solvent fluids solvent action of water

solvent

noun

Medical Definition of solvent (Entry 2 of 2)

: a substance capable of or used in dissolving or dispersing one or more other substances especially : a liquid component of a solution present in greater amount than the solute

Keep scrolling for more

solvent

adjective
sol·​vent | \ ˈsäl-vənt How to pronounce solvent (audio) \

Legal Definition of solvent

: able to pay all legal debts as they become due

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on solvent

Spanish Central: Translation of solvent

Nglish: Translation of solvent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of solvent for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about solvent

Comments on solvent

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

WORD OF THE DAY

an act or instance of returning to life

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

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!