xanthate

noun

xan·​thate ˈzan-ˌthāt How to pronounce xanthate (audio)
: a salt or ester of any of various thio acids and especially C3H6OS2

Word History

Etymology

borrowed from French, from (acide) xanthique "any of various thio acids" (from Greek xanthós "yellow" + French -ique -ic entry 1) + -ate -ate entry 1 — more at xantho-

Note: The discoverer of what is now known as xanthic acid, of which xanthate is the salt, was the Danish chemist William Christopher Zeise (1789-1847). (His name is conventionally given in English form; one branch of the Zeise family, which originated in Silesia, established itself in Denmark in the 17th century.) In the earliest published description of the acid and its salts ("Sur l'Acide hydro-xanthique, avec quelques-uns de ses produits et ses combinaisons," Annales de chimie et de physique, tome 21ième [1821], pp. 160-178), Zeise named the radical of the presumed acid xanthogène ("… parce qu'il forme des combinaisons de couleur jaune avec quelques métaux" - "because it forms yellow compounds with certain metals"). He called the acid itself acide hydro-xanthique and the salts hydro-xanthates. In a longer Danish version of the article, published later ("Xanthogensyren med nogle af dens producter og foreninger," Det Kongelige Danske Videnskabernes Selskabs naturvidenskabeglige eg matematiske afhandlinger, förste deel [1824], pp. 219-76), the equivalent terms are Xanthogen, Xanthogensyre, and Xanthogensyresalte.

First Known Use

1831, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of xanthate was in 1831

Dictionary Entries Near xanthate

Cite this Entry

“Xanthate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/xanthate. Accessed 1 Dec. 2022.

Medical Definition

xanthate

noun

xan·​thate ˈzan-ˌthāt How to pronounce xanthate (audio)
: a salt or ester of any of various thio acids and especially C3H6OS2

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