One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
as modifier Of or denoting a hydrocarbon radical derived from an alkane by removal of a hydrogen atom.
- ‘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.’
- ‘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.’
Late 19th century: German, from Alkohol ‘alcohol’ + -yl.
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