One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A malodorous, toxic, spontaneously flammable liquid compound containing arsenic.
- ‘The investigation and identification of cacodyl by Bunsen in 1848 was to mark the beginning of the era of organometallic chemistry.’
- ‘There he distilled arsenic with potassium acetate to arrive at a cacodyl (also known as alkarsine or Cadet's liquid), a malodorous compound that the named after the Greek term for ‘stinky’ (kak dl s).’
- ‘She had previously tackled cacodyl, ogygian and zeitgeber.’
- ‘Berzelius coined the name kakodyl (later changed to cacodyl) for the dimethylarsinyl radical ((CH 3) 2 As) from the Greek kakodes (evil-smelling) and hyle (matter).’
- 1.1as modifier Of or denoting the radical —As(CH₃)₂, derived from cacodyl.
Mid 19th century: from Greek kakōdēs ‘stinking’ (from kakos ‘bad’) + -yl.
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