Definition of nitric acid in English:

nitric acid


  • A colorless or pale yellow liquid acid that is corrosive and poisonous and has strong oxidizing properties, made in the laboratory by distilling nitrates with sulfuric acid.

    • ‘In a second method, toluene is mixed with nitric acid and oxidized to produce benzoic acid.’
    • ‘Oxidizing acids such as nitric acid or strong sulphuric acid cannot be handled with copper alloys.’
    • ‘When ammonia is reacted with nitric acid, ammonium nitrate is produced.’
    • ‘A nitronium ion, made by treating nitric acid with sulfuric acid, is the electrophile.’
    • ‘Ether can be oxidized by nitric acid to produce ethanoic acid.’


Late 18th century: from French acide nitrique.