One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A liquid mixture of hydrocarbons that is present in certain rock strata and can be extracted and refined to produce fuels including gasoline, kerosene, and diesel oil; oil.
lubricant, lubrication, greaseView synonyms
- ‘Eocene formations are important source or reservoir rocks for petroleum or gas in several parts of the world.’
- ‘Benzene is a colorless and highly flammable liquid hydrocarbon derived from petroleum.’
- ‘Crude oil, also known as petroleum, is the world's most actively traded commodity.’
- ‘Products produced from petroleum, such as mineral oils, are classified as petrochemical pollutants.’
- ‘Liquid paraffin is a mixture of liquid hydrocarbons obtained from petroleum.’
Late Middle English: from medieval Latin, from Latin petra ‘rock’ (from Greek) + Latin oleum ‘oil’.
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