Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
See also: Phlogiston
From Late Latin phlogiston, coined by Stahl in 1702, from Ancient Greek φλογιστόν (phlogistón), neuter of φλογιστός (phlogistós, “burnt up, inflammable”), from φλογίζω (phlogízō, “to set fire to”), from φλόξ (phlóks, “flame”).
- (chemistry, historical) The hypothetical fiery principle formerly assumed to be a necessary constituent of combustible bodies and to be given up by them in burning.
2006, Philip Ball, The Devil's Doctor, Arrow 2007, page 397:
- Stahl argued that phlogiston could explain combustion, a central concern of eighteenth-century chemistry.
hypothetical fiery principle
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