[as modifier] Of or denoting a hydrocarbon radical derived from an alkane by removal of a hydrogen atom.
- ‘This produces the second electrophile, the positively charged alkyl group.’
- ‘In common with other alkyl groups, both forms of the propyl group modify the behavior of a functional group.’
- ‘The ethyl group has a greater molecular weight than the smallest alkyl radical which is the methyl group.’
- ‘As the size of the alkyl group increases, i.e. as the number of carbon atoms increases, the water solubility decreases.’
- ‘Subsequently, alkyl hydroperoxides may initiate radical chain reactions and cause membrane destruction.’
Late 19th century: German, from Alkohol alcohol + -yl.